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Can a criminal conviction whilst under the age of 18 affect future job prospects or higher education?

View profile for Colin Rawson
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Can a criminal conviction whilst under the age of 18 affect future job prospects or higher education?

The answer is yes. Even if you are convicted as a juvenile, the impact of any conviction can have a detrimental effect on your choice of career, whether in education or paid/voluntary employment.

Some types of employment demand a higher disclosure check. Even being arrested for a criminal offence may preclude an individual from obtaining their dream job or education course.

Once convicted of a crime, alongside any punishment, an individual will undergo a period of rehabilitation. The period of rehabilitation will depend on the nature of the offence committed and the sentence imposed by the court. The conviction will be classed as unspent until this rehabilitation period has expired. An unspent conviction, in most circumstances, will have to be disclosed.

Rehabilitation period for a child under the age of 18

PunishmentPeriod of rehabilitation
Youth rehabilitation orderSix months after the order has been completed
Detention and training order less than six months18 months after the sentence has ended (including licence period
Detention and training order between 30 and 48 months42 months after the sentence has ended (including licence period)
Detention and training order above 48 monthsConviction is never spent


Once a conviction is spent, for certain jobs, your conviction will not need to be disclosed. You need to carefully check the wording of the job application as they will differ on a job by job basis. However, for certain jobs, again depending on the job you are applying for, even a spent conviction will need to be disclosed.

It is therefore essential that you seek expert legal advice should you be accused of committing any criminal offence. Call our team on 0175 321 6399

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