Receiving a Minded to Bar letter from the Home Office’s Disclosure and Barring Service (‘DBS’) can come as a complete shock. The brutal tone in which these letters are worded can also be incredibly upsetting. If you receive a Minded to Bar letter, you must contact our DBS Solicitors immediately as there is a strict time limit for putting forward representations stating why you should not be put on a list barring you from working with children or vulnerable adults.

As one of the UK’s most highly-regarded, successful, and busy criminal and regulatory law firms, our Barristers and Solicitors have a wealth of experience in advising and representing people who have received Minded to Bar letters. The Legal 500 describes us as

“A forward-thinking firm with its finger on the pulse of the market. Head and shoulders above a lot of the competition. Agile and modern.”

Below are the answers to some questions our team are frequently asked concerning Minded to Bar letters.

What does Minded to Bar mean?

The DBS is charged with ensuring that people who work with children and vulnerable adults, either as an employee or a volunteer, are safe to be put in such positions. The department provides access to England and Wales criminal records.

A person can be automatically barred from working with children and/or vulnerable adults if they are convicted of a serious criminal offence such as rape and sexual assault. If the DBS has received information which leads it to consider adding a person to the barred list or an individual has been convicted or cautioned for an offence that does not give rise to an automatic bar, a Minded to Bar letter may be issued.

What jobs require an Enhanced DBS Check and a Minded To Bar Check?

There are four types of DBS checks, namely:

  • Basic DBS check
  • Standard DBS check
  • Enhanced DBS check
  • Enhanced with Barred List(s) DBS check

Due to privacy and data protection issues, eligibility to request an Enhanced DBS Check and a Minded to Bar Check are limited.

If the position being applied for involves participating in regulated activities with children and/or vulnerable adults, then an Enhanced DBS Check and a Minded To Bar Check can be requested. The position must be included in the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (Exceptions) Order 1975 and be specifically contained in the regulations listed in the Police Act 1997, as permitted to check these barred lists.

Here are some examples of regulated activities involving children and vulnerable adults:

  • Healthcare
  • Personal care
  • Nannying or childminding
  • Teaching
  • Social work

Why do you need legal advice if you receive a Minded to Bar letter?

If you receive a Minded to Bar letter you have eight weeks to submit written representations stating why you should not be included on a barred list. The decision to add a person to a barred list is not taken lightly by the DBS due to the devastating consequences it can have on a person’s professional and personal life. Therefore, with the help of an experienced Criminal Defence Solicitor, there is a high chance of successfully persuading the DBS to not add you to a list barring you from working with children and/or vulnerable adults.

What is the process for receiving a Minded to Bar letter?

The DBS will normally send you a Minded to Bar letter after receiving a referral from the police, a current or former employer, Social Services, or any other agency that is entitled to make such a referral.

Because you have a mere eight weeks to make written representations as to why you should not be included on a barred list you must act immediately. If you fail to respond, you will inevitably be placed on one or both of the lists which could end your career and mean you cannot undertake many voluntary activities. Being placed on a barred list can have severe consequences on you and significantly impact your future career prospects, as well as damage you and your loved one’s reputations.

How long does a person stay on a barred list?

There is an expectation that a person included on a DBS barred list will remain on the list for life. However, if you are over the age of 25 years, you can apply to have your name removed after 10 years. The DBS will not automatically review your inclusion, you must apply and provide robust evidence that the reason you were put on a barred list in the first place no longer exists.

People placed on a barred list who were under 18 years at the time can apply for removal after one year. Those aged between 18 and 24 at the time of inclusion can request to be removed after five years.

How do you know you are on a barred list?

If the DBS decides, after reviewing your written representations, that you should be placed on a barred list they will inform you. If you do not make representations within the given timeframe, the DBS will inform you that you are being placed on the barred list.

A right of appeal to the Upper Tribunal is available on the narrow grounds that the DBS made an error in law or fact. Because of the limited scope for appeal, it is vital to seek expert legal advice from a DBS Solicitor when making your initial representations.

Call us now for legal advice

You can be assured that we provide expert legal advice concerning making written representations following the receipt of a Minded to Bar letter.

We would advise you to take immediate action and contact a solicitor as soon as you become aware of the Minded to Bar. Instructing a solicitor in the early stages can save you costs in the long run, avoiding solicitor and counsel fees should the matter need to be taken to Upper Tribunal.

For a discrete consultation about how we can assist you, contact one of our Licensing and DBS Check Solicitors today. For fast and discrete advice, please contact us through our contact page here. Alternatively, you can phone 0333 240 7373, or email us at