If you have any criminal record that may show-up on a DBS check (as explained below), you are obliged to declare this to the University of Cumbria at the earliest possible stage, before the result of your DBS check is issued.

Please note that the self-disclosure form is an addition (for those to whom it applies) to the DBS application process; it is not your actual DBS application.

Having a criminal record will not automatically prevent you from pursuing your chosen course, but it does mean that we have to carry out an assessment of your suitability and gather information from you about the offence(s). In a very few cases this may ultimately mean that you cannot be cleared for admission, or have to consider an alternative, non-vocational course. Please be assured that we look at all cases individually and consider them in the context of your circumstances and any contributory factors. For more information on our DBS clearance procedure, please see our DBS Policy.

To enable us to do this, you need to submit a self-disclosure form now, if you have not sent this in already. You do not need to submit this form if you have no criminal record to tell us about. Should you have any queries or concerns about this please email the DBS Team

Download the DBS Policy

Download the self-disclosure form

Contact the DBS team

Further information

What types of information could a DBS check show?

Depending on your age at the time and the amount of time that has elapsed since then, a DBS check could reveal any of the following: - 

  • any convictions received at any age, even if over five years ago or under 18;
  • any cautions you have received when aged 18 or over;
  • any locally held police information/intelligence about you, if the police consider this relevant to the course concerned;
  • any pending or ongoing investigations or prosecutions;
  • certain types of driving conviction, including drink driving, if the conviction was received when 18 or over. If if any doubt, please declare it. You do not need to declare speeding or parking fines. 

For the exact guidelines on what the check could show, please see the section 'What may no longer appear on a DBS check?' below. 

NB: Motoring offences in Scotland
Many motoring offences that took place in Scotland, including speeding fines, are treated differently from those in the rest of the UK for DBS check purposes and frequently appear on DBS certificates. For this reason, you are advised to disclose any such incidents to us, to avoid complications once your DBS certificate is issued.

What may no longer appear on a DBS check?

A process called ‘filtering’ was introduced in May 2013: this allowed for certain old and minor offences not to be shown on a DBS certificate after a designated time period. On 28th November 2020, new changes came into effect increasing the types of offence that are 'subject to filtering'.

Such offences become 'protected' and you are not required to disclose them. What is filtered depends on:-

  • how old you were at the time of the conviction or caution/reprimand/warning;
  • the type of offence - whether it was a conviction or a caution/reprimand/warning.

Please see the table below for guidance on how filtering works: - 

Age at time of offenceType of offenceFiltered/Not Filtered?Filtered after...
Under 18 Reprimand, final warning, caution Filtered Immediately
Under 18 Conviction Filtered 5.5 years (from date of conviction, not date of offence)
18 or over Caution (adult caution) Filtered 6 years (from date of caution)
18 or over Conviction Filtered 11 years (from date of conviction, not date of offence)
18 or over Caution or Conviction: if on list of offences never filtered Not Filtered Never become subject to filtering


Please note that offences will never be filtered if:-

  1. the offence appears on a list of designated offences that are more serious or of a certain nature (e.g. some drugs related offences; violent offences including Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm - whether a caution or a conviction; most sexual offences);
  2. if you received a custodial sentence for the offence - even if you did not actually serve the sentence (suspended sentence).

This means that you must always disclose any offences that fall into one of the above two categories.

For more detailed guidance please refer to the DBS’s Filtering guide. You can also find helpful information on Unlock's Information Hub.

I think I have a criminal record to declare

Please refer to the guidelines on this page and complete our Criminal Record Self Disclosure Form now if applicable to you. Please return by email to dbs@cumbria.ac.uk and contact us if you have any queries.

Receiving this form as early as possible from you will assist us in dealing with your DBS clearance situation in a timely manner: this process can take a while to be completed, particularly if we need to contact you for clarification; take-up references; or arrange to see you in person to discuss further. Thank you for your co-operation. 

I do not have a criminal record to declare

You do not need to submit a self-declaration form, but please note the following important information:

If you do not submit a self-declaration form prior to applying for your DBS check but your DBS certificate later reveals that you do have a criminal record, the University will treat this as a case of failing to declare relevant information: you will be subject to our DBS clearance procedures and will have to explain your failure to declare.

It is therefore far better that you tell us now if you are in any doubt about whether you have anything to declare: concealing information could be seen as worse than the offence itself and could jeopardise your place on the course.

What to do if your DBS certificate shows criminal record or police information

Owing to a change in the law in 2013, anyone with any criminal record information on their DBS certificate will need to give us sight of their original DBS certificate once issued as we will not receive our own copy. Please note that this does not apply to those applicants whose criminal record certificates are ‘clear’: you do not need to send in your certificate.

If your certificate shows any criminal record or police information, you must send or bring in your original certificate to the University on receipt of this. Please send to: DBS Team, Admissions, University of Cumbria, Bowerham Road, Lancaster, LA1 3JD.

We strongly advise you to post by Recorded Delivery and we will return it the same way.

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