DBS Checks & Criminal Record Checks

DBS Checks is a leading umbrella body for the Disclosure and Barring Service and has been named one of the top 8 providers for criminal record checks in the UK.

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DBS Checks: Basic, Standard And Enhanced

Sep 30, 2022 | DBS

DBS checks provide an official record of an individual’s criminal convictions and are carried out by the Disclosure and Barring Service. These checks are often used during the recruitment process in order to vet candidates so that employers can make safer decisions regarding who they decide to employ. This is especially important for positions where candidates will be required to work with vulnerable groups. 

There are three types of these DBS checks available, Basic, Standard and Enhanced. Each of these categories has its own eligibility requirements and unveils certain levels of information. Keep reading to learn more about the differences between these checks. 

What Is A Basic DBS Check? 

A basic DBS Check can be considered to be the ‘entry level’ check. Any individual or employer in the UK can request this type of check. A basic DBS check will check a person’s criminal history, convictions and cautions from the Police National Computer (PNC).

Employees from almost all industries will have to undergo a basic disclosure check, such as those in construction and hospitality. However, certain positions, especially those where you will be working with vulnerable groups, may require a higher level of DBS check.

DBS Checks & Criminal Record Checks

What Is A Standard DBS Check?

A standard DBS Check is one step above a basic check. Unlike a basic check, individuals cannot apply for a standard check themselves; it must be requested by the employer or organisation that requires it. 

This is more in-depth, and highlights caution, reprimands,  warnings and convictions – both spent and unspent. Some of the jobs that require such a check include lawyers, accountants and other positions of high responsibility. This is to ensure that candidates and staff have not been found guilty of fraud or financial misconduct. 

What Is An Enhanced DBS Check?

The third and final check is an enhanced DBS. It is the highest level check available and, as with the Standard check, must be requested by an employer or organisation on your behalf. 

This level check is required for individuals and professionals who will be working with vulnerable groups, such as children or the elderly. These roles are stipulated within the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (ROA) 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975 and are only necessary for those who find themselves working with these vulnerable groups more than one day a week or 3 out of 30 days.

When requesting this check, an employer can request an Enhanced Check With Barring List or an Enhanced Check without one. This ensures that a candidate is not barred from working with vulnerable groups but can only be requested if the candidate or employee will be involved in a regulated activity. Most roles in education and health care will require the Enhanced DBS Check.



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