As an Organization, do I request the Basic Criminal Record Check, or the Enhanced Criminal Record Check?
This is one of the most common questions we receive from organizations at ScreeningCanada. Clients want to know the difference between the two services so they can make an informed decision in their onboarding of candidates. In an effort to ensure you hire the most suitable person for the offered position, let us outline what is included in each service and then give some examples that might provide some guidance to you.
Criminal Record Check – Basic
The Basic Criminal Record Check is a query, based on name and date-of-birth of active criminal files in the RCMP National Repository of Criminal Records. This search will report any Canadian criminal convictions that have not been pardoned,discharged or sealed by record suspension.
Basic Criminal Record Checks do not report on summary convictions or pending charges before the courts.
Across Canada,the Basic Criminal Record Check may be referred to as Standard or CPIC check.
Criminal Record Check – Enhanced
The Enhanced Criminal Record Check is comprised of two components:
The Basic Criminal Record Search (above) is included, PLUS it includes a query of the Investigative and Identification data banks of CPIC and a search of the Police Information Portal (PIP). These queries of national data banks provide you with significant information that is really at the heart of an enhanced check. This check is the most comprehensive criminal record check allowed in Canada.
The Enhanced Criminal Record Check provides visibility to entries in the following key areas:
· Discharged findings of guilt may be identified if relevant and releasable (Absolute discharges within 1 year and conditional discharges within 3 years).
· Additional convictions, either indictable or summary, that have not yet been populated into the RCMP’s National Repository of Criminal Records.The RCMP data bank queried in the basic query may not be fully up to date as to populating recent indictable convictions, and does not, by definition, include any summary convictions (lesser criminal offences).
· Summary convictions(only if convicted within the past five years).
· Outstanding warrants; criminal charges presently before the courts, including restrictive bail or release conditions; peace bonds and prohibition or probation orders in effect.
So, what are the key differences and similarities?
Obviously, you want to see evidence of any criminal convictions associated to the applicant. That is the key component of both checks and why you have decided to make this an integral part of your onboarding processes.
All identified convictions are from a secure RCMP national database, populated by submissions from our Canadian police services across the country.
Both services are completed in relatively the same turnaround time and by Canadian police services who are trusted and accredited providers to ScreeningCanada.
However, there are some differences that you should be aware of.
1. There have been incidents where some candidate files of indictable convictions have not been updated in the National Repository. This potential gap in a Basic Criminal Record Check is addressed by the Enhanced Criminal Record Check, which searches the Police Information Portal (PIP), a data bank that includes up to date, current entries from police records management systems across Canada. That same data bank has information of summary convictions as well. You now have the comfort and confidence that a complete search of potential criminal convictions was conducted.
2. The Enhanced Criminal Record check can offer potentially more impactful material and information that will allow you to make a fully informed and supported decision.
Due to Canadian privacy regulations, the individual is asked to attend and manage their own criminal data if their Enhanced results are returned with a flag indicating additional information is required.
3. Organizations today should take into consideration if the candidate’s criminal history is recent or relevant to the position they are applying to.
The fact that a candidate is currently facing charges on serious allegations may alone cause you to enter into a meaningful conversation with the individual.
When there are current charges, the organization should assess the risk the candidate might pose towards the organization and its clients/customers/public.
If a candidate was charged for an assault, would that impact your company brand if they were interacting with the public on your behalf and that information was discovered?
At the end of the day, the reason you are conducting a review of the candidate’s criminal history is so that you can reliably demonstrate due diligence in your onboarding processes. You want to protect your current employees, and equally your clients or members of the public that you serve.
Any or all of these can quickly be negatively impacted should you not be aware of easily retrieved and discovered information located via the Enhanced Criminal Record Check.
Should you wish to further discuss the components of your decision-making process with a ScreeningCanada representative, we are here to assist you and provide additional clarity.