Frequently asked questions
What's the difference between CRB and DBS?
Since 1 December 2012, CRB (Criminal Records Bureau) checks have been known as DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) checks. This was due to a merger between the CRB and the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA). The checks and details provided by a DBS check are the same as those that were provided by CRB.
Are you part of the DBS?
No - we're a registered body for the DBS. This means we can provide standard, enhanced and enhanced with barred list checks for your organisation. Find out more about our registered body status.
We can act as your nominated umbrella body to process DBS checks for your employees and volunteers.
What is umbrella body and why use one?
An umbrella body is an organisation that provides services to others which are linked to it.
As part of our umbrella agreement, you can process DBS checks through our counter-signatories without the need to register directly with the DBS yourself. The DBS certificate will still state your business name. You'll also still control how often and the number of checks you request.
Many organisations find this easier, as it cuts out the need to register directly with the DBS.
How are checks completed?
As part of our registered body status we also specialise in using e-Bulk. This means that 99.9% of our checks requested are done so using an online system. This has been built in-house to allow us to submit DBS checks.
We offer multiple ways to complete DBS checks to make sure it's convenient for both the business and applicant. Applications that aren't yet finished can be stored and returned to later. Both the business and applicant are told via email when any status changes occur.
What levels of check do you offer and what's the difference?
We can provide the following levels of check for businesses:
- enhanced with barred list check
Standard checks can only be requested for those in or starting a role specified in the exceptions order of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. This check is not the same as a basic disclosure. Examples of roles that may qualify for standard disclosures include finance, legal, accountancy, and medical centre assistance roles (ie receptionists or clerks).
Enhanced disclosures are usually for school/care roles. They can only be requested for those in or entering a role as specified in the exceptions order of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. Most roles based in schools or care settings qualify for this level of check.
Enhanced disclosure with barred list check are for roles within regulated activity. These roles include carers, teachers or childminders, and private hire drivers. ISA barred lists cannot be requested with a standard check and not all enhanced check roles will qualify for the barred lists checking.
If you're not sure which level of check suits your needs and would like to discuss this, please contact us.
What level do I need?
The level of DBS check needed depends on many things. This includes things such as the job role, setting and frequency. It's important the correct level of check is applied for. If the check is too high the employer is asking for information they are not privy to. Checks too low may risk exposing vulnerable groups to incorrectly checked applicants.
We're always on had to help work out the level of check needed for each applicant. It's important to remember there is no blanket rule. Not all employment roles within your business will qualify for the same level of check.
How long do DBS checks last?
There's no exact expiry on a DBS check as the certificate is a snapshot in time. You may set your own re-check frequency. This usually ranges from six months to three years depending on the job field.
Can I apply as an individual or if I'm self-employed?
Individuals are not able to apply for standard or enhanced checks. We recommend these people apply through the contracting business. For example, contractors who are required to attend schools or care homes to provide services are encouraged to apply for their check through the requesting business.
If you're a student looking for work experience within regulated activity, your course provider should apply for the DBS check on your behalf.
If you're a volunteer your DBS check can be processed through the group/business you're wishing to volunteer with.
If you're unsure if you're eligible for a DBS check you can either ask your employer or contact a member of our team.
Who verifies my ID?
You must have your ID verified by a representative of the company that has asked for your check. We need your original documents to have been seen by this person and they must complete the ID section on the application. Please do not send us original documents.
Can I use my old DBS certificate for my new employer?
Each DBS check is tailored for the organisation and job role it has been requested for. The business name and job role will also be printed on the final DBS check certificate. The level of check may not be suitable for the new role. We always recommend a new check should be done for changes in circumstances.
Where can I find out about your pricing?
We have a simple pricing structure. In almost all cases there's no setup fee and no minimum or maximum set for the number of applications made.
We have a clear tiered pricing structure and payment is not needed until the check result has been returned from the DBS.
We may be able to offer a reduced price for high volumes of DBS checks. Please contact us where we'll be able to discuss pricing.
Volunteers only? That’s no problem - we offer the same level of support and advice for your business and applicants.
How long will it take to get a DBS disclosure result?
The time taken to receive a result varies for each application. We aim to check and process all applications submitted to us within 24 hours. Any errors on the application may mean it takes a little longer to process. Once submitted to the DBS the average turnaround is between three and 10 days. After the application has been sent to the DBS we can't influence how long it will take to process.
If there are any delays this is usually as a result of police queries and background searches. You can track the progress of your check using our online system. We'll email all involved parties once the certificate is due for dispatch. From this stage the applicant will receive their certificate within seven to 10 days. If the certificate has not been received after 14 days the applicant can ask for a replacement.
How can I track my application's progress?
The easiest way to track the progress of your check is by logging on to our online system and using the 'track your application' link. This is shown on your application once it's been uploaded to the DBS.
You can also track your application through the DBS website. You'll be asked for your reference number and your date of birth. Your reference number is 11 digits long will begin with either E or F. It can be found on your online account or by contacting a member of our team.
What if I'm struggling to log on to the system?
If you're having trouble logging into our system please contact us.
For other system help we have easy to follow 'how to' guides to help you when submitting check requests.
What are your opening hours?
The system is online 24/7 making it easy to access when it's good for you. Our team can be contacted between 8.30am and 5pm Monday to Thursday, and 8.30am and 4.30pm on Friday.
If you need to contact us outside of these hours you can leave a voicemail on our out of hours service and we'll contact you back as soon as possible. You can also email us and we'll try to contact you the next working day.
How can I get in touch with you?
You can get in touch with us by:
- phone: (01226) 773428
- email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- post: PO Box 634, Barnsley, S70 9GG