Specialist Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) Lawyers
What is the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Barred List?
The Disclosure and Barring Service hold a list of individuals who cannot engage in ‘regulated activity’ ie. are banned from working with children and/or vulnerable adults. If the DBS write to you indicating they are considering placing you on either barred list it is imperative that you seek specialist legal advice.
There are two barred lists:
- The children’s barred list
- The adult’s barred list
The Disclosure & Barring Service maintain both lists and have done since 2012.
If you are included on a barred list, then it is an offence if you seek to work in regulated activity with a group with which you are barred. Similarly employers will be breaking the law if they knowingly employ somebody who is included on a barred list.
The DBS cannot include an individual on a barred list unless they can establish that an individual is presently, has previously been, or may be in the future be engaged in regulated activity with children and/or vulnerable adults.
Watch Head of DBS, Nathalie Potter, explain how Olliers can help if you have received a ‘Minded to Bar’ letter:
The Disclosure and Barring Service is a government agency that controls or manages access to regulated activity. The DBS provide information to employers to make safer recruitment decisions and to protect vulnerable adults and children.
The barred list is a list of people that are prevented from working in regulated activity for the safeguarding and prevention of harm to vulnerable adults and children.
A minded to bar letter is sent by the DBS and they will set out the allegations against you as well as any evidence they have received to make their decision to potentially place you on the barred list and they will set out why they consider you a safeguarding risk.
Any behaviour past or present that not necessarily corresponds with regulated activity, it could be on a voluntary basis, or even when you were 16, 17, 18 years old. It does not have to be connected to regulated activity.
You absolutely should make representations to the DBS, this is your chance to provide them with your version of events. The DBS will have been provided with information from either the police or a past employer and it is a one-sided biased account of what happened. You absolutely need to share with the DBS your version of events and your side of the story. It is not inevitable that you will be included as it’s really, really important to put your side of the story across to the DBS. The caseworker will determine from the evidence they have been provided with but also from the representations we are giving the DBS, whether it’s proportionate and appropriate to include you on the barred list.
The DBS will give you eight weeks to make representations and it’s important that you utilise this. From then, at the point of submission of our representations, they will usually take four weeks to consider whether to include you on the barred list or not. It may take longer depending on how complex your case is but the response time at the moment is usually around four weeks.
Here at Olliers, we have a dedicated team with extensive experience of providing the best representations to the disclosure and barring service. The team at Olliers are here to listen, empathise, understand and assist with your DBS needs. The team will present your case in the best possible way but it fully depends on whether you admit the allegations against you or deny them. If you deny the matters set out in the DBS minded to bar letter, we will work with you to find evidence to counter the allegations against you.
How will I know if the DBS are considering adding me to the barred list?
The DBS will formally notify you in writing if you are at risk.
There are two different types of notifications:
- Notification of inclusion in a barred list – Certain offences lead to automatic inclusion in a barred list and there are no opportunities for representations against this due to the seriousness of the offence.
- Notification of ‘Minded to bar’ – If you are convicted of certain offences or the DBS receive information about you, then they will consider whether or not you should be placed on the barred list. They will write to you and you will be invited to make representations as to why you should not be included on the adult and/or children barred list.
Why might the DBS consider adding me to the barred list?
The three main ways that could potentially lead to the DBS considering whether to place you on the barred list are:
- Discretionary Referrals – employers must refer an individual to DBS if they sacked them because they harmed someone, removed them from working in regulated activity because they might have harmed someone or were planning to sack them for either of the above reasons, but they resigned first.
- Application for an Enhanced DBS Check – this could trigger the DBS receiving information from the police which may cause them to consider whether or not you should be placed on the barred list.
- Autobars – convictions for certain offences lead to automatic inclusion in a barred list and other offences lead to consideration as to whether or not to place you on the barred list.
Should I make representations to the DBS?
Yes! Being added to one of the DBS barred lists means that you will be prevented from working in a regulated capacity with children and/or vulnerable adults. Therefore any decision to bar you will have serious implications and could potentially mean the loss of a hard worked for and successful career. It will also affect any voluntary work you undertake.
The decision to bar relates to your perceived risk and whether or not it is considered appropriate for you to be included on the list.
The DBS are more likely to add you to the list if you do not make representations against doing so. It is vital that you seek advice from a specialist solicitor as soon as possible and would suggest you contact us immediately upon receipt of a minded to bar letter. We can assist by making written representations to the DBS for you.
What are the time periods for making representations?
The letter you will receive from the DBS will notify you of the date by which your representations need to be sent to DBS. This is usually eight weeks. If more time is required then an extension of time can be sought and we can deal with this on your behalf.
For more information on the barred lists click here.
The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) replaced the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA). DBS Certificates can be requested by and disclosed to employers carrying out backgrounds checks of potential employees. There are a number of different types of checks:
- Basic Certificate: This is the most basic type of DBS Check and will contain details of convictions and conditional cautions considered to be ‘unspent’ under the terms of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.
- Standard Certificate: This DBS check and will show spent and unspent convictions, cautions (unless filtered), reprimands and final warnings.
- Enhanced Certificate: This will additionally show any other information held by a police force that is considered relevant to the role applied for.
- Enhanced Certificate with Barred List checks: This will also show a list of persons deemed unsuitable to work with children and/or vulnerable adults.
Can you appeal a DBS Check if there is a mistake on your DBS Check Certificate?
The DBS record may provide incorrect information about previous convictions and this can have a significant impact on your employment. Our team of specialist solicitors can assist you in appealing any mistakes on your DBS check certificate ensuring that such mistakes are rectified.
Is it possible to prevent an entry on a DBS Check Certificate?
Previous cautions and convictions can prevent you from obtaining employment, career progression, education opportunities, travelling and far more.
Our team of specialist lawyers can apply to have cautions or convictions edited from your DBS check certificate, depending on your circumstances so they do not appear on the DBS Check.
We can also apply to remove other miscellaneous information such as details of arrests and acquittals which did not result in a conviction but which may still appear on the DBS check certificate.
Click here for more information on what may be disclosed on an Enhanced DBS Check.
Is it possible to apply for removal of a caution?
You may have received a caution at the police station but not appreciated the implications of such caution until after you had left the police station. The police may have told you a caution was the easiest way to deal with the matter and wouldn’t affect your future. You may have been scared that you would have been taken to court if you didn’t accept the caution and that the outcome would have been far worse for you or you may have been desperate to leave the police station to get home.
However if you work as a professional, for example, a doctor, nurse, teacher or solicitor you may find that having a caution on your record can have devastating implications for your career.
It is possible in certain circumstances to have a police caution removed from your record for example if you were incorrectly advised to accept the caution or the police did not follow the procedure correctly.
We may also be able to judicially review the decision to caution you. If successful, the caution will be removed from your DBS check certificate.
Enhanced DBS Checks – Disclosure of Third Party Information
In some circumstances disclosure relating to third parties is allowed in relation to Enhanced DBS Checks. There is a decision making framework called the Quality Assurance Framework (QAF) which is used for the processing, consideration and disclosure of police information for enhanced disclosure and barring service checks. Click here to read more about how Olliers can help you if the police are considering disclosing information about other people (third parties) on your enhanced DBS Check.
Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Checks/Caution Removal Solicitors
Olliers Solicitors are able to provide the following DBS related services:
- Applications for deletion of entries on Police National Computer (PNC records)
- Applications for deletion of biometric data
- Representations to the DBS if you have received a ‘Minded to Bar’ Letter or ‘intention to include’ on Barred List letter
- Appeal an entry which has been disclosed on an ‘Enhanced DBS’ Check
Recent DBS Success
- 2023 – Client LT – Successfully avoided inclusion on both the Vulnerable Adults and the Children’s barred lists following two convictions for harassment
- 2023 – Client AO – Successfully applied to have information disclosed on an enhanced DBS certificate regarding an allegation of theft from a service user deleted from the certificate
- 2023 – Client PH – Successfully avoided inclusion on the Children’s barred list for having a caution as well as a historic conviction for common assault
- 2023 – Client AT – Successfully avoided inclusion on both the Vulnerable Adults and the Children’s barred lists following a conviction of committing an act outraging public decency by behaving in an indecent manner and other indecent exposure allegations
- 2023 – Client FP – Successfully avoided inclusion on the Children’s barred list following an allegation of hitting a vulnerable child
- 2023 – Client HA – Successfully avoided inclusion on the Children’s barred list for allegations regarding indecent images of children
- 2023 – Client WB – Successfully removed from the Children’s barred list following submission of late representations regarding allegations of endangerment of a child and failure to safeguard a child
- 2023 – Client BL – Successfully avoided inclusion on both the Vulnerable Adults and the Children’s barred lists for a conviction of assault of an emergency worker and other assault incidents
- 2023 – Client AI – Successfully avoided inclusion on both the Vulnerable Adults and the Children’s barred lists for a conviction of blackmail and alleged possession of indecent images
- 2023 – Client CH – Successfully removed from both the Vulnerable Adults and the Children’s barred lists following submission of late representations regarding a guilty plea to ill-treatment/wilful neglect of a person without mental capacity
- 2023 – Client BH – Successfully avoided inclusion on the Vulnerable Adults’ barred list for allegedly keeping money intended for the use of a service user
- 2023 – Client P – Successfully avoided inclusion on the Children’s barred list following three convictions of intercourse with a girl under 13
- 2023 – Client M – Successfully avoided inclusion on the Children’s barred list following a historic incident of sexual contact with a child
- 2023 – Client H – Successfully avoided inclusion on the Vulnerable adults and Children’s barred list following an altercation with former students
- 2023 – Client W – Successfully avoided inclusion on the Children’s and Vulnerable Adults barred lists following an incident of gross misconduct at a school
- 2023 – Client D – Successfully avoided inclusion on the Children’s and Vulnerable Adults barred lists following a conviction for Battery and Criminal Damage and a historic caution for Assault
- 2023 – Client D – Successfully avoided inclusion on the vulnerable adults barred list following convictions of sexual activity with a child under 18
- 2023 – Client T – Successfully avoided inclusion on the Children’s and Vulnerable Adults barred lists following an incident of misconduct in the workplace
- 2023 – Client A – Successfully avoided inclusion on the Children’s and vulnerable adults barred list following allegations of false time recording and not attending a visit of a service user
- 2023 – Client H – Successfully avoided inclusion on the Vulnerable Adults barred list following allegations of not attending a visit to a service user
- 2023 – Client B – Successfully avoided inclusion on the Children’s barred list and the Vulnerable Adults list following historic conviction of Indecent Assault of a male under 16