DBS: The most frequently asked questions

Who carries out the checks?

The Disclosure and Barring Service (the DBS) is the government department of the Home Office that carries out the criminal records checks. They have access to the Police National Computer (PNC), which holds all criminal record information.

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Because of the change of government department, a criminal records check is now referred to as a DBS check rather than a CRB check. There is no difference in the search or the information provided by such a search. The only difference is in the government department that carries it out.

What records are searched?

The DBS checks through the PNC for convictions, cautions, reprimands or warnings held against a person’s name. They may also check through the vulnerable adult and children’s barred list. Sometimes DBS checks will also include obtaining information held by police that relates to the suitability of a person for a specific job such as working for a House keepers and carers London company such as https://www.guardiancarers.co.uk/services/housekeeper-carer. The thoroughness or depth of the check depends on the job and the industry within which the person is or will be working.

How can I obtain a DBS check?

Whilst it is possible to apply directly to the government department for the disclosure, many employers and individuals choose to employ an agency to deal with the checks as they will deal with all of the administrative requirements on your behalf. You simply need to provide some basic personal details, and then wait for the results.

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What detail does the DBS check disclose?

There are three different types of criminal record checks: Basic level, Standard level, and Enhanced level.

Basic level disclosure is available to anyone and provides details of any unspent convictions and cautions on your records. The Standard level disclosure provides more detailed information and is available to employers who are seeking to employ a person for a role such as an accountant or a solicitor.

Enhanced level disclosure provides the most comprehensive searches. It can only be requested by employers who are seeking to employ a person to work with children or vulnerable adults. The Enhanced level may also include a barred list check that will confirm to the prospective employer whether the individual has precedent criminal behaviour, which means they are not allowed to work with children or vulnerable adults.

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