Criminal record checks are carried out by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).
Most jobs require a basic criminal record check, this means an employer is allowed to ask if a person applying for a job has unspent convictions.
There are 3 different types of criminal record check an employer can request:
- a basic check shows any unspent convictions, cautions, reprimands and final warnings
- a standard check shows any spent and unspent convictions, cautions, reprimands and final warnings
- an enhanced check shows any spent and unspent convictions and cautions, plus any information held by local police that’s considered relevant to the role. An enhanced check can also show whether a person is on the list of people barred from working with children or barred from working with adults.
For jobs working with children and vulnerable adults an enhanced criminal record check is required. This usually needs to be requested from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) by an employer or an organisation if you are applying to be a volunteer.
Check your own record
Anyone can request a basic check to show their employer or the person they’ll be working for. It costs £23.
To find out what information is held about you on police records, anyone can make a subject access request. It is free of charge.