How to have a conviction stepped down

A person wanting to prevent these convictions being disclosed on a CRB check should do the following:

Firstly, if you are unsure whether you have any previous convictions you can find out what information the police hold on you. The Data Protection Act 1998 gives you the right to ask in writing whether there is any personal data that the police holds or has processed about you. This is the right of Subject Access. For a fee of £10 and proof of your identity you can request this information by going into a local police station or police operations centre asking for the relevant form (form 3019). You should complete this form and hand it back to your local police station. Alternatively you can send your completed application with fee and proof of identity to: MPS Public Access Office, PO Box 57192, London SW6 SF.

If you live outside of the Metropolitan Police Service area, you must apply to your local police force. You should be given a receipt for your application and the police are required to process this information within 40 days of it being received.

If you find out that there is information held by the police on a sexual offence that is no longer covered by the 2003 Sexual Offences Act then you can apply in writing to the police requesting that the conviction be ‘stepped down’. Your letter should include your current name and address and details of when and where the offence took place. The letter should be addressed as ‘private and confidential’ and can be handed in at any police station.

Once a decision has been made you should be informed in writing within a maximum of 40 days. You also have the right to appeal against any decision made regarding your case.

For more information contact Galop; 020 77042040

You might also find the following organisations useful:

Criminal Records Bureau provides information regarding applying for CRB checks: 0870 9090 811

The Apex Trust provides information and advice for ex-offenders, including the Job check helpline: Tel 0870 6084567. Email


Metropolitan Police Service