Fabiola had several convictions which she’d received during a particularly difficult period in her life. Although she’d been to college and changed her life considerably, she was still finding it difficult to find a job that had decent prospects and opportunities to progress.
After being turned down for yet another job, Fabiola contacted the Unlock helpline in desperation explaining that her convictions were continuing to blight her life and that she could see no hope for the future.
Although she wasn’t able to provide details of all her convictions, the Unlock helpline advisor told Fabiola that, in his opinion, her convictions were likely to now be spent and, for the majority of jobs, she would not need to disclose them. The advisor suggested that Fabiola get details of her criminal record by applying to ACRO for a subject access request and then use the Unlock disclosure calculator to find out whether her convictions were spent or not.
“I followed the advice that I was given by the Unlock helpline advisor and as soon as I’d received the details of my convictions, I put the data into the disclosure calculator. It came back that all my convictions were spent – I’d been incorrectly disclosing them for years. The calculator has really made my situation very clear and I’ve just applied for another job and ticked the ‘No’ box on the application form .”
Unless the job you’re applying for is exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act, employers should disregard any spent convictions that they become aware of. However, as we know, this doesn’t always happen and employers may find it difficult to ‘forget’ information relating to a criminal record. We always recommend that you find out whether your convictions are spent or not before you start applying for jobs. One way of doing this (which Fabiola didn’t do because of the cost) is to get a copy of your own basic DBS check. The alternative way is to do what Fabiola did and get a subject access request and then use the Unlock disclosure calculator to find out whether her convictions were spent or not.
- Visit the disclosure calculator
Notes about this case study
This case study relates to our disclosure calculator.
Names and details have been changed to protect the identity of those involved.