Criminal record disclosure & barring

The Disclosure and Barring Service replaced the former functions of the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) in 2012. It has two main functions:

  • Disclosure of information in criminal record checks (disclosure functions)
  • Determining whether individuals should be added to, maintained or removed from the barred lists (barring functions)

Our solicitors are able to help should you have a disclosure or barring service dispute. Call us on 0175 321 5096 to speak with a legal advisor or fill in our online enquiry form and we will be in touch with you shortly.

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Disclosure

For many, the decision by prosecuting authorities not to proceed with a criminal investigation, or the decision to offer no evidence at trial resulting in the charges being left on file is a great relief and seen as a successful outcome in the criminal process.

For some, the acquittal at a Criminal Court is an even greater relief and results in justice having been done.

However, the majority of the public are not aware that the above scenarios may not be an end to the ordeal of criminal proceedings. 

The Criminal Records Bureau now the Disclosure and Barring Service are responsible for processing criminal record checks which may be called for if you apply for certain jobs or volunteer for certain activities.

They affect people seeking employment or other activity in a regulated area or in contact with vulnerable adults or children. An enhanced criminal record certificate could raise these issues and still prevent opportunities for employment or activity despite no conviction existing.

Our specialist disclosure and barring service dispute team aim to deal with matters following the conclusion of a criminal investigation and have been involved in a number of cases in which they have assisted individuals including:

  • Factual disputes on the proposed information being disclosed
  • Disputes about the necessity or relevance of information being disclosed
  • Disputes about the legality of disclosure of information

The team can assist at key points of the process including

  • Advice on the likely consequences of criminal proceedings and conviction or caution
  • Advice on acquittal
  • Advice on Filtering of convictions
  • Representations to the police against disclosure
  • Raising a dispute with the DBS
  • Representations to the Independent Monitor seeking a review of proposed disclosure
  • Judicial review of decisions to disclose information

The team have been involved in key cases which have developed the law in this area and offer a bespoke service to clients depending upon their specific needs and means.

They can also assist in making representations against barring.

For advice on disclosure disputes contact our specialists on 0175 321 5096 or you can complete an online enquiry form and a member of the team will contact you directly.

We're widely accredited for our work - regulatory & criminal justice

  • Legal 500

It is our business to deliver legal services that work for our clients, you can trust our specialists to take care of things on your behalf. Over the years our regulatory and criminal justice team has been recognised by industry awards and accredited for their excellence.

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Barring

The Disclosure and Barring Service may receive a referral to consider barring an individual from working with vulnerable adults and/or children in one of the following ways:

  • Autobar referral – this arises from a notification of a conviction or caution for specified ‘relevant offences’ which can then result in either:
  • automatic barring without representations - meaning that the individual will be barred from regulated activity or
  • automatic barring with representations – which provides the individual an opportunity of making representations that the DBS will consider before making a final determination of whether the person should be added to the barred list.
     
  • Consideration following disclosure of information on a criminal record certificate. This would follow an application for a certificate (required when working with children or vulnerable adults) that reveals a conviction, caution or other information which raises concern.
  • A referral from an employer or other organisation where there is a legal duty do so e.g. following dismissal from employment or disciplinary proceedings where there is harm or potential harm to a child or adult. This can include cases where somebody resigns from a post or activity before a safeguarding investigation is concluded.  

The objective of a barring consideration it to prevent unsuitable people working or having unsupervised contact with vulnerable groups, including children across the UK and thus protect those groups.

Following a referral, the DBS will write to the person concerned to inform them of the inquiry. There is no need to respond to an initial notification because the DBS will then advise whether they are considering barring or taking no further action. However, there may be circumstances when it is tactically prudent to make an initial response and provide information to assist the DBS in their inquiry.

If the DBS determine that the threshold may be met for barring then they will advise you that they are minded to bar and ask you to make representations. This will involve consideration of whether you have been, are or maybe in the future involved in ‘regulated activity’ and whether the alleged conduct gives rise to a risk of harm to children or vulnerable adults (as per the referral for consideration of whether to add you to the children or adult barred list).

The consequence of being added to the barred list means that you will not be able to undertake work or voluntary roles involving regulated activity with either children, vulnerable adults or both. There is normally a minimum period of barring so the outcome can have very serious consequences on employment or volunteering.

Our specialist team are able to offer advice on making representations against barring and have wide experience of a range of scenarios which have led to consideration being given to making an entry on the barring lists.

They have also represented clients in barring appeals to the Upper Tribunal and Court of Appeal.

For advice on barring disputes contact our specialists on 0175 321 5096 or you can complete an online enquiry form and a member of the team will contact you directly.

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