It’s a simple enough question – will a motoring offence appear on my DBS certificate? Unfortunately, the answer is less straightforward. The simple answer is maybe; some offences will appear, and some won’t. If you are worried about your driving record, then it should be relatively easy to work out whether your offences will appear on a certificate.
Fixed Penalty Offences
Most people who are concerned about their motoring record and a future DBS check will have committed a fixed penalty offence. Offences such as speeding, going through a red light, or driving in a bus lane are dealt with at the roadside by the police, or you’ll get a letter in the post with a fine, and a request to send your licence off to the DVLA to have a set number of points added. If your offence involves excess speed, you might be offered the chance to go on a speed awareness course instead of taking the points. Fixed penalty offences are not crimes. The DVLA and the Police will have a record of the offence, but this is entirely separate from your criminal record.
That’s not to say fixed penalty offences don’t matter – they can have serious consequences. Once you reach 12 points on your licence it will be withdrawn, and if you depend on driving for work, that could mean that you lose your job along with your licence. You are also obliged to tell your insurer about any points you’ve racked up on your licence, and points for speeding or other matters will increase the amount of your annual premium.
Criminal Driving Offences
There is another category of driving offences which are in general more serious than speeding or driving in a bus lane. This category covers matters such as driving without insurance, drunk driving, speeding at way over the limit for that road, reckless driving, or careless driving. If you are suspected of having committed one of these offences, then this isn’t something which a police officer will deal with at the roadside. When matters go to court, then this is where the line is crossed into a criminal matter.
Sometimes there is a grey area between these two categories of offences. Think about it this way: if the penalty for the motoring offence which you have committed could be community service, a fine, or even a prison sentence, then this is a matter which could appear on any future DBS certificate. These offences are known in legal terms as recordable offences.
Filtering and DBS Checks
Filtering is the process by which the DBS looks at older offences and decides whether to include them on a DBS certificate or not. The good news is that even if you do have a driving offence on your criminal record, then in many cases it will be filtered out and will not appear. There is lots of guidance online about when offences can be filtered, depending on the sentence handed down, and the age of the person committing the offence.