Explanatory Notes

Disclosure (Scotland) Act 2020

2020 asp 13

14 July 2020

Provision by Provision Commentary

Part 1: Disclosure of criminal history and other information

Level 1 disclosures

Section 1: Level 1 disclosure

7.Section 1 defines the content of a Level 1 disclosure, replacing the basic disclosure offered under the 1997 Act. This includes information about unspent convictions (including unspent childhood convictions) from the Criminal History System and Police National Computer. It will also confirm whether the applicant is subject to the notification requirements of Part 2 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003.

8.In this Part “conviction” has the same meaning as in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (“the 1974 Act”) (see section 69 of the Act), but does not include a children’s hearing outcome (see paragraph 24). “Childhood conviction” of a person means a conviction for an offence committed when the person was under the age of 18 (see section 69).

9.An unspent conviction is one which is not spent under the 1974 Act (see section 69 of the Act). By virtue of amendments made to the 1974 Act by paragraph 2 of schedule 5 of the Act, the majority of childhood convictions will become spent immediately (see paragraphs 248 and 249 of these notes for a fuller explanation of the relevant amendments).

10.By virtue of the Age of Criminal Responsibility (Scotland) Act 2019 (“ACR Act”)(1), a conviction of a person for an offence committed while the person was under the age of 12 will no longer be treated as a conviction for the purposes of the 1974 Act and, consequently, for this Act.


The Age of Criminal Responsibility (Scotland) Bill was passed by the Parliament on 7 May 2019 and received Royal Assent on 11 June 2019.