Protected spent cautions and convictions

The General Medical Council is a UK-wide regulator whose overarching objective is to protect the public across all four countries of the UK. We have powers to require all applicants to disclose their criminal past. These powers apply equally to applicants from any part of the UK or overseas. The powers are set out in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 ('the Exceptions Order') as amended by the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 (Amendment) (England and Wales) Order 2013.

The 2013 amendments to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 Exceptions Order 1975 mean that certain spent convictions and cautions are 'protected'. This means that you do not need to tell us about them and we cannot take them into account when assessing your application for registration.

Protected cautions

You do not need to tell us about a caution if:

Protected convictions

You do not need to tell us about a conviction if:

If you have ever been convicted of more than one offence (whether as an adult or under the age of 18), you must tell us about all of your convictions.

Listed offences

You must tell us about any conviction or caution received for a ‘listed offence’. Listed offences include serious violent or sexual offences and other offences, which are relevant to the role of a registered medical practitioner.

They also include equivalent offences for those committed outside of the UK.

You can find the list of offences that will never be filtered from a criminal record and that you must declare on the Disclosure & Barring Service website.

Please note advice from the Disclosure and Barring Service that it is not possible to capture a definitive list of all equivalent offences under the law of all other jurisdictions. Where you are aware that you have committed an offence overseas which may be equivalent to an offence in the UK you should seek independent expert or legal advice to ensure you provide information that is truthful and accurate.

Further information

The following organisations can provide further information or advice on the amendments to the Exceptions Order 1975 (2013):

Disclosure & Barring Service
Customer Service: 0870 9090 811

NACRO Resettlement Advice Service
Helpline: 020 7840 1212

Helpline: 01634 247 350