What is the effect of spent criminal records overseas – including employment, immigration, studies, adoption?
The Registration of Criminals Act is a domestic law, meaning that it only applies to Singapore. If a person is employed by an employer in Singapore under Singapore law, RCA applies even if he is posted overseas, and he may lawfully not disclose a spent record under Singapore law. However, if his employment is conducted under governance of another country’s law, RCA does not automatically apply and will depend on the law in the relevant foreign country.
If a person’s criminal record is spent, can he answer “no” when asked if he has a criminal record in an employment application?
Yes, since his criminal record has been rendered spent, he can lawfully say that he has no criminal record.
If a person’s criminal record is spent, can he answer “no” when asked if he has been convicted in a court of law in an employment application?
A person’s criminal record may be spent, but it does not change the fact that he had been convicted before. Hence, the person has to admit to having been convicted in a court of law.
What will happen to a person’s registrable particulars such as fingerprints, photographs and body samples records if his criminal record is rendered spent?
A criminal record that has been rendered spent is not erased from the Register of Criminals. Thus the registrable particulars collected as part of that criminal record will still remain in the Register of Criminals kept by the Police but the record will be marked as spent.
Will a person who had previously been placed on probation be eligible for his criminal record to be rendered spent?
A probation is not considered a conviction and thus not a criminal record. A person who was placed on probation for committing an offence does not have a criminal record relating to that offence. His probation also does not disqualify him from having a subsequent record of a conviction for another offence rendered spent.
Can a person’s criminal record be rendered spent if he has just missed the criteria by a few days or by a few hundred dollars? Is there an appeal channel?
A person who is disqualified by the conditions stated in section 7C of the Registration of Criminals Act can apply to the Commissioner of Police under section 7D of the RCA for their criminal records to be rendered spent.