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August 12 2013

UK Background Check Changes

The new Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) has now become operational. Introduced in an attempt to scale back the number of criminal record checks under the previous CRB system, it is clear that there are still some issues to do with the right to privacy to be resolved.Over the last year, a number of legislative and structural changes have been implemented in respect of criminal record checks. Combined with the effects of recent caselaw, these changes will be of great interest to employers and employees working with vulnerable members of society. The Protections of Freedoms Act and the establishment of the DBS introduce changes that aim to strike a balance between protecting the vulnerable and facilitating employment. They do not however, alter the fact that certain legislation requiring criminal record checks has been declared incompatible with the right to privacy under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). The outcome of this appeal and the implementation of the changes to the criminal record checks system should be watched closely by both employers and employees working with the vulnerable.