Practical information & advice
There are many misconceptions about convictions for sexual offences and how they work in terms of disclosing to employers. You should make sure that you are clear about:
- When your conviction becomes spent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act and what you’re legally requested to disclose to employers, insurers etc.
- The impact of the sex offenders’ register and any civil order on rehabilitation periods.
Here you’ll find links to various parts of this site where we have information and useful resources relating to sexual offences.
Possibly. Your conviction cannot become spent until the SHPO ends. If it is for an indefinite period then your conviction will not become spent until the SHPO has ended (for example by going back to court).
It depends on the order that was given to you. You should check your police record, but it may be:
No. It is possible to remain on the register once your conviction becomes spent. However, being on the register doesn’t mean that you would necessarily be legally required to disclose your conviction if you are asked by an employers. It depends on the job you’re applying for and whether your conviction is spent.
Yes, normally after a period of 15 years if you were convicted as an adult or after 8 years if you were convicted as a child.
If you intend on moving in with your partner or you will have significant contact with the children, then it’s likely that children’s services could become involved.
Depending on the nature of your offence, you may be considered unsuitable to work with children and/or vulnerable adults and may be placed on one or both barred lists.
Here you’ll find some of the common advice we give on sexual offences. This is based on what we’ve learnt as a charity, as well as the real-life experiences of people with convictions.
- Be clear about the impact that any civil order will have on the rehabilitation period of your caution/conviction.
- Wherever possible, try to develop a good working relationship with your probation officer or your supervising police officer. They are likely to be less intrusive or restrictive if you are open and upfront with them.
- If you have an indefinite notification or indefinite SOPO/SHPO, it’s generally worth applying to have them amended or revoked at the appropriate time.
Frequently asked questions
The Sexual Offences Act 2003 also reformed and clarified the majority of sexual offences, and those offences/sentences that would mean an individual is placed on the registered are listed in Schedule 3 of the Act. The notification requirements apply to anyone convicted or cautioned from 1997 onwards for a Schedule 3 offence, including for offences committed before that date.
Here you’ll find links to useful organisations and websites related to sexual offences that we refer to in our information and advice. Contact details for the organisations listed below can be found here.
- Circles UK – A national organisation working to reduce sex offending
- Lucy Faithfull Foundation – A child protection charity working with people who have convictions for sexual offences
- Family Rights Group – A charity working with parents in England and Wales who have children in need, at risk or are in the care system
- Ministry of Justice – A Government body who have responsibility for the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act
- Police.UK – Provides a list of police forces in the UK
Read personal stories
The personal stories below have been posted on theRecord, our online magazine.
Discuss this with others
Read and share your experiences of dealing with sexual offences on our online forum.
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