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A Closer Look: What’s Revealed in Your Criminal Record Checks

7th Feb 2024

Are you ready to dive into the world of Criminal Record Checks?

Criminal Record Checks

Different Types of Checks

The Disclosure and Barring Service offers different types of checks to help organisations and employers make informed decisions about the suitability of individuals for specific roles. The main types of DBS checks are:

Basic DBS check

Basic DBS checks usually reveal the following information:

  • Unspent Convictions

Any criminal convictions that haven't reached the statutory rehabilitation period are disclosed on a Basic DBS check. The rehabilitation period varies depending on the nature and severity of the offense.

  • Conditional Cautions

A Basic DBS check will include conditional cautions that haven't expired yet.

  • Other Relevant Information

In some cases, additional information such as police intelligence may be included if deemed relevant to the check. However, this is not common for Basic DBS checks.

A Basic DBS check is the most limited in terms of the information it provides and is primarily used for roles that do not involve working with vulnerable groups or have a high level of responsibility. Employers often request Basic DBS checks for positions that require a minimal level of scrutiny.

 

Standard DBS check

Standard DBS checks usually reveal the following information:

  • Unspent Convictions

Details of any unspent convictions, which are criminal convictions that have not yet reached the end of their rehabilitation period.

  • Spent Convictions

Information about spent convictions, which are convictions that have passed the rehabilitation period and are considered “spent” under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act.

  • Cautions

Information about any cautions received, both simple and conditional.

  • Reprimands and Final Warnings

Details of reprimands and final warnings issued by the police.

  • Other Relevant Information

While Standard DBS checks do not include checks against barred lists, they may include additional relevant information held by the police.

Standard DBS checks are typically requested for positions that involve a higher level of responsibility or interaction with the public but do not require the in-depth scrutiny provided by an Enhanced DBS check. Examples of roles that might require a Standard DBS check include positions in finance, legal professions, and certain managerial roles. The information disclosed aims to provide a more comprehensive understanding of an individual’s criminal history while still balancing the consideration of spent convictions.

 

Enhanced DBS check

Enhanced DBS checks usually reveal the following information:

  • Unspent Convictions

Details of any unspent convictions, which are criminal convictions that have not yet reached the end of their rehabilitation period.

  • Spent Convictions

Information about spent convictions, which are convictions that have passed the rehabilitation period and are considered “spent” under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act.

  • Cautions

Information about any cautions received, both simple and conditional.

  • Reprimands and Final Warnings

Details of reprimands and final warnings issued by the police.

  • Other Relevant Information

Enhanced DBS checks may include additional information held by local police forces that is deemed relevant to the position being applied for. This can include details that are not disclosed in a Standard DBS check.

  • Check against Barred Lists

Enhanced DBS checks include a check against the DBS Barred Lists. Individuals who are barred from working with vulnerable groups or engaging in regulated activities will be identified through this check.

 

Implications for Employments

Employer Perception -

Employers may perceive certain types of criminal convictions or cautions as indicators of untrustworthiness, unreliability, or potential risk. This perception could lead them to question an applicant’s suitability for a particular role, especially if it involves handling sensitive information, working with vulnerable people, or exercising a high level of responsibility.

Legal Requirements -

Some industries or positions have legal requirements regarding criminals’ records. Certain convictions may disqualify individuals from working in specific fields altogether, while others may require a thorough risk assessment or additional measures to mitigate potential risks. For example, individuals with certain criminal convictions may be barred from working with children, vulnerable adults, or in roles involving financial services.

Competitive Disadvantage –

In competitive job markets, applicants with clean records may have an advantage over those with convictions or cautions. Employers may prefer candidates with a clean background to minimise perceived risks and liabilities associated with hiring individuals with criminal records.

Employment Policies –

Some employers have strict policies regarding hiring individuals with criminal records. While some organisations may have more lenient policies and consider factors such as the nature and severity of the offense, rehabilitation efforts, and the relevance of the conviction to the job, others may have zero-tolerance policies that automatically disqualify applicants with certain types of convictions.

Stigma and Discrimination –

Individuals with criminal records may face stigma and discrimination in the job market, even if they have served their sentence and demonstrated rehabilitation. Prejudice against individuals with criminal records can result in unfair treatment, limited job opportunities, and barriers to reintegration into society.

Understanding the details of your Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check is not just about being aware of your past, but also about preparing for your future. Whether you're an individual navigating the job market or an employer ensuring the safety of your organisation, the information revealed in a DBS check holds significant importance.

For more information, please email compliance@cavitydentalstaff.co.uk.

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