The Government was elected with a manifesto commitment to introduce a new law to pardon those who suffered from convictions similar to Alan Turing’s, and who cannot correct the injustice themselves through the “disregard” process. Details of the policy have not yet been formulated and Ministers will be discussing their plans and making announcements in due course
There is a clear difference between a pardon and a disregard. A pardon is legally neutral in effect and does not affect any conviction, caution or sentence, though it may remove the ”pains and penalties” which resulted from these. The effect of a disregard is that all successful applicants will be treated “for all purposes in law” as though the conviction had never occurred and need not disclose it for any purpose. Official records relating to the conviction held by prescribed organisations will be deleted or, where appropriate, annotated to this effect as soon as possible after the grant of a disregard.