Source of information
All criminal record certificates indicate the country providing the information and the name of the government institution delegated to participate in the pan-European exchange of criminal records.
The search is always made in public, national, centralised criminal record court databases and includes potential convictions in the whole preferred country, regardless of the location of the sentencing court.
As the process relies on public institutions of 24 countries, the turnaround times can vary substantially. Please see a detailed description of all countries to learn about the average turnaround time for each state.
Content of the “clear” certificates
If no convictions were found the certificate will clearly state this information and include the subject’s identification details used in the search.
Data appearing in this section is sourced from the application form completed by the subject. The inspectorate issuing the certificate may supplement this section with further personal details appearing in the public records as an additional identity verification.
Content of the certificates revealing criminal records
Apart from the subjects identification details, such certificates include three basic sections:
1. Information on the judgement, including name and location of the court, case index mark and adjudication date.
2. Information on one or more offences leading to the conviction, including legal basis in the country where the offence was committed.
3. Information on the penalties and their relation to particular offences.
The certificate can hold multiple convictions, each appearing as a separate set of the above data.
The scope of information revealed in the certificates as well as the time periods covered depend on the country. Each EU member state has their own laws regulating expungement of convictions for various offences. You will find details information on each country here.
Certificate format and languages.
Certificates from most of the countries are issued as a standarised ECRIS template in the language of the country, through which all the checks are initaited. Some countries may still choose to provide their own national templates instead.
Whenever the original certificate language is non-English, the English translation is provided as a part of the standard service.
Standard service includes scans of the original certificate along its English translation in a PDF format. Posting the hard copy and translation to other languages are available as additional services if required.
Below is the sample report containing one conviction with our interpretation of particular sections.