There are many different types of Police checks carried out by individuals and employees in Scotland, and often you will be told what sort of check your new employer will carry out on you. There are also types of disclosure which you can apply for yourself, in order to support an immigration application or similar. A standard disclosure is a fairly basic type of check, and one which your employer will complete on your behalf – the individual cannot apply for this type of disclosure by themselves.

Who Needs a Standard Disclosure?

The two main types of disclosures applied for by employers are the Enhanced Disclosure which concerns those working with vulnerable groups such as children or the elderly, and the Standard Disclosure which covers people working in other occupations where they need to be of “good character” and not have a criminal record. This could include someone applying to be employed as an accountant, working in a pharmacy or legal practice, someone applying for a firearms licence or a senior manager in a bank or financial services organisation. Organisations employing someone in this sort of position want to assure themselves that the people they are considering haven’t got a lengthy criminal record for dishonesty, drugs offences or violent crimes.

What Does a Standard Disclosure Show?

Each different type of disclosure shows different information. As the name suggests, the Basic Disclosure has the most information, and the Enhanced Disclosure has the most. The Standard Disclosure is somewhere in the middle. As well as listing convictions which are unspent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act, the Standard Disclosure will list spent convictions too along with any details of unspent cautions. This means that any minor convictions from the applicant’s distant past will show on the disclosure form. It will also state whether or not the person is listed on the Sex Offenders’ register. Like other types of disclosure, if nothing is found on searching the Police records, this will be stated too.

What Employers Do With Disclosure

There is a lot of misunderstanding regarding what Disclosure Scotland actually do. Any type of disclosure certificate is just a statement of fact. It records any convictions the person has had, along with where and when the conviction took place, and what the penalty was. Standard Disclosures will also list some cautions. Disclosure Scotland does not make recommendations about whether or not a person should or should not be employed by the organisation concerned. That decision is purely in the hands of the employer. A large pharmacy chain looking to employ someone in their 50s may be happy to overlook a minor conviction for fighting when the person was 18. On the other hand, someone applying to work in a cash handling role in a bank may be rejected immediately with any type of conviction for theft or fraud.

I’m Worried Something Might Show Up on My Disclosure

It’s always best to be honest with prospective employers. Tell them about any convictions or cautions which you know will show on a disclosure, and explain the circumstances. They may be more understanding than you’d think.