The Home Office have announced that legislative processes have started which will see old and minor cautions and convictions no longer disclosed on a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) certificate. The DBS checks (formally known as CRB checks) are being amended following a Court of Appeal ruling in January 2013, which stated that the disclosure of all cautions and convictions on a DBS Certificate was incompatible the Convention for Human Rights. The changes are stated as follows:
An adult conviction will be removed from a criminal record certificate if,
(i) 11 years have elapsed since the date of conviction (ii) it is the person’s only offence and (iii) it did not result in a custodial sentence.
Even then, it will only be removed if it does not appear on the list of specified offences. If a person has more than one offence, then details of all their convictions will always be included. An adult caution will be removed after 6 years have elapsed since the date of the caution – and if it does not appear on the list of specified offences.
For those under 18 at the time of the offence:
- a conviction received as a young person would become eligible for filtering after 5.5 years – unless it is on the list of specified offences, a custodial sentence was received or the individual has more than one conviction
- a caution administered to a young person will not be disclosed if 2 years have elapsed since the date of issue – but only if it does not appear on the list of specified offences.
These changes will not come into force until the legislation has been passed through parliament.