Will a caution effect my chances of becoming an officer?

I'll try to keep this short and sweet. I'm graduating from university this year with a criminology degree(ironically) and was planning on going for a career in the army, as an officer. However, during my first year at university a few years ago I was arrested and cautioned for criminal damage. I was extremely drunk on my way home from a nightclub and carlessly broke a wing mirror of a car. This was my first and only dealing with the police. Im genuinely not a bad person and law abiding. Will this affect my career prospects within the military?
 

loopintheP

War Hero
No effect whatsoever. A caution is immediately "spent" so won't appear in a check; not that you're subject to a DBS check anyway.

I can't recall if the Security clearance asks? That said, it needn't be mentioned.
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
I can't recall if the Security clearance asks? That said, it needn't be mentioned.

Wrong. It does need to be mentioned, the security clearance (SC) paperwork specifies that. But like you say, I'm fairly sure they are legally bound to discount it. It's probably as much an integrity check as anything.
 

azimghur1990

Old-Salt
A spent conviction is a conviction which, under the terms of Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, can be effectively ignored after a specified amount of time. The amount of time for rehabilitation depends on the sentence imposed, not on the offence. The more serious the conviction, the longer the period of rehabilitation. For example, if you have received a prison sentence of more than four years, the conviction will never become spent, but cautions become spent immediately (apart from conditional cautions which will become spent after three months).

The Act aims to rehabilitate offenders by not making their past mistakes affect the rest of their lives if they have been on the right side of the law for some time. For details of the length of time before a conviction becomes spent, see the NACRO website in 'related information'.

Unless applying for particular types of work (see below), a person who has spent convictions and cautions does not have to disclose them to prospective employers, and employers cannot refuse to employ someone on the basis of spent convictions.

However, when applying to work in certain types of employment, for example, working with children or vulnerable adults, certain professions such as law, health care, and pharmacy, senior management posts within certain sectors and employment where matters of national security are involved, the application form will state that it is exempt from the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. In these situation, you may need need to disclose your cautions and convictions, and they may be disclosed on your DBS criminal records check.

The law protects people from having some old and/or minor convictions and cautions disclosed to employers, but sexual and violent offences will always be disclosed, as well as any convictions that resulted in a custodial sentence, and all convictions if a person has more than one conviction. Regarding any other convictions and cautions: convictions are not shown after eleven years (in relation to persons 18 or over) or five and a half years (in relation to persons under 1), and cautions are not shown after six years (in relation to persons 18 or over) or two years (in relation to persons under 1). In order to determine whether your caution/conviction needs to be disclosed and whether it will show on a DBS check, see the flow chart below:

disclosure_of%20cautions_and_convictions-155.png




Please be aware that the information that police forces disclose may differ from the above and particularly in relation to enhanced disclosures, any information that the Chief Constable feels relevant with regards to the reason for the check, can be disclosed.
 
D

Deleted 15653

Guest
Wrong. It does need to be mentioned, the security clearance (SC) paperwork specifies that. But like you say, I'm fairly sure they are legally bound to discount it. It's probably as much an integrity check as anything.

This is correct - the system will not be too bothered by this, as long as you mention it first. If you don't say anything then it might be construed as trying to hide it which would call your integrity into question. Give full details and you'll almost certainly be ok, there are people with far worse histories who had full careers in the Army...:rolleyes:
 

Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
Okay, it was years ago now but I was up for ABH when I applied. In the end, the police accepted my version of events - he started it, not me - and I was cautioned.

At the point of application, it was made clear: 'We don't mind if you've got something going on. We will, though, be mightily p1ssed off if, having given you the chance to come clean now, you don't and then we're left with a situation to deal with.'

I declared it and was told, 'No problem.'

Just be honest.
 

vitani199

Clanker
I start my basic training in a few months, going RMP but just been given a caution for malicious communications... Do I need to ring recruitment and tell them?
 
I start my basic training in a few months, going RMP but just been given a caution for malicious communications... Do I need to ring recruitment and tell them?
Honesty is better than deception.

There’s plenty of RMP with cautions etc.
 

Ditts

Old-Salt
I can't recall if the Security clearance asks? That said, it needn't be mentioned.
As part of the police national computer check, cautions will be shown to the case assessor.

Vetting subjects should declare all convictions, whether or not they are spent with the sole exception of parking and speeding offences.

Failure to disclose will be taken into account.
 

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