Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974
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Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974An Act of (UK) Parliament, which allows as a public policy some criminal convictions to be “spent” after a rehabilitation period (RP), so those convicted of relatively minor offence aren’t faced with lifelong effects of past transgressions.
The RP is determined by the sentence, and begins on the date of the conviction. If there has been no further conviction during the RP, the conviction is spent and, with certain exceptions, need not be disclosed by the ex-offender in any context such as job applications, obtaining insurance, or in civil proceedings. For adults (over 18), the RP is 5 years for non-prison sentences, 7 years for prison sentences of up to 6 months, and 10 years for prison sentences of up to 2 years; convictions are never spent for prison sentences of more than 2 years. For offenders under 18, the RP is usually half that for adults.