Get your Basic DBS Checks for as little as £3.11

What is a Basic DBS Check?

A Basic DBS check provides a filtered list of an individual’s convictions and conditional cautions from the Police National Computer (PNC) that are considered unspent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (ROA) 1974. They can be applied for in England and Wales.

The applicant will receive a Basic DBS Certificate through the post, showing the results returned by the check. If the check was requested by an employer, then they’ll be able to see whether the certificate was returned empty or not, but they won’t be able to actually see any of the details. 

Formerly known as a Basic CRB check, employers can use this information to help make a safe recruitment/suitability decision.

How To Apply for a Basic DBS Check

Any individual, employer, organisation, or charity can request a Basic DBS/CRB check (with the applicants’ permission), and they can be requested for any purpose for someone living or working in England and Wales.

For example, an organisation may want to request one to see any unspent convictions that a prospective employee has, to ensure they can make a well-informed employment decision.

However, if the role being checked for involves working with children or vulnerable adults, then you will need to apply for a Standard or, more likely, an Enhanced check.

To apply for Basic DBS checks online with Aaron’s Department, register your organisation below:

The 5 Steps of a Basic DBS Application

With our online DBS system, getting a Basic Disclosure as an employer has never been easier!

Step 1

Enter the name and email of your applicant into the system and an invitation is sent.

Step 2

The applicant logs in and fills out the application (or you can do it on their behalf).

Step 3

The candidate shows you the required documents.

Step 4

You confirm that you have seen the documents (and that they are legitimate), and press send*.

Step 5

The application is processed by the DBS, and your applicant receives their Basic Disclosure Certificate.

*(If any errors are identified by our countersignatories, you will be quickly notified so amendments can be made.)

Please Note:

At Aaron’s Department, we do not offer a Basic check for individuals. Any service aimed at individuals is just a form checking service, offering little value, and you will still have to go through the Government’s verify service.

It will be slower than going directly, and some services will charge you a ridiculous amount of money for doing so little.

We strongly suggest that any individuals reading the contents of this page looking for a check for themselves go directly to the UK Government’s website for a Basic check.

What Documents Are Needed For A Basic Disclosure Check?

The documents needed for a Basic DBS check depend on two things: which country the applicant is from, and what documents they actually have available.

Some of the more common documents used for DBS checks are:
– Passport.
– UK Driving Licence.
– Birth Certificate.

If you want to read more about the documents needed for any of the DBS Disclosure checks, we have written an Application Guide – linked here.

What Shows Up On A Basic DBS Check?

A Basic DBS Certificate contains all unspent convictions, final warnings, conditional cautions, and reprimands from the Police National Computer (PNC).

What are Spent and Unspent Convictions?

After a specific time period, many convictions become ‘spent’ which means they must be ignored by employers, as if they’d never happened. The table below shows how to calculate when a conviction will become spent. ‘Unspent convictions’ simply refers to convictions that have not yet reached their ‘spent’ date.

The period before a conviction is spent is also known as the “rehabilitation period”. Once it is over, the conviction is considered spent and isn’t included in a Basic disclosure.

Some convictions will never become spent – below is a more detailed description of how long it takes convictions to become spent. To find out more about spent and unspent convictions, why not read our article, Spent And Unspent Convictions, What’s The Difference?


What Are Conditional Cautions?

A conditional caution is issued if the offender has admitted the offence they have done, and has accepted the conditions which are a consequence of their offence. A timescale is determined, during which, if the offender breaks the conditions they have agreed on, then prosecution might follow. If the offender doesn’t break the conditions in the given timescale, then the case is finalised, and there is no prosecution.

Basic Checks are Now Available Directly Through the DBS

As of 2018, Basic UK DBS checks for any organisation whose candidates are living/working, or have previously lived or worked in England and Wales should be processed through the Disclosure and Barring Service (the DBS).

Companies or organisations must use a Registered Body/Umbrella Body (like Aaron’s Department), and have permission to apply for a DBS check from the candidate.

Basic DBS Check Criteria

For an organisation to apply for an individual’s Basic DBS check, they must:

basic dbs check requirements

1. Currently or previously lived or worked in the United Kingdom

2. Be at least sixteen years old

3. Have granted them permission to apply for a check, in their name

What Information Do You Need for a Basic DBS Check?

To apply for a DBS check for an employee or another person, you will need the candidate’s:

  • Current and any previous full names.
  • Date and place of birth.
  • Identification Documents.
  • Five-year address history.
  • National Insurance number (if the candidate has one).
  • Written consent, giving you the right to process the application on their behalf.

How Does the ID Checking Process Work?

If you are an organisation applying for a person’s Basic disclosure, you need to check their ID documents (ID card, Passport, Driving Licence etc.). Our system lets you know which combinations are acceptable, ensuring that you don’t accidentally break the rules.

Individuals applying for a Basic check through the Disclosure and Barring Service need to use an ID checking service such as the Post Office ID Checking Service and provide confirmation that the ID checking was performed. Read more about the DBS ID checking guidelines or our FAQ, What Is A Basic DBS Check?

The Basic DBS Check Process

As the lowest level of check, the Basic DBS only goes through three stages (compared to the five Enhanced DBS Check stages). This flow chart illustrates the route a Basic DBS check takes to be processed:



The application is received and validated by the DBS. Any errors and/or empty fields are checked. Once this is done, the application is entered into the DBS system or, if required, returned to the counter-signatory to be corrected.


The Basic DBS check is approved, and the applicant will now be checked against the Police National Computer (PNC) for any relevant information.


The certificate is printed and is only sent to the individual who has been checked by the DBS.

How Long Does a Basic DBS Certificate Last?

As with all DBS checks, there is no expiry date. It should just be remembered that the certificate is only a snapshot of the individual at the time of the check being requested. The DBS check will not be updated until a new one is requested.

The employer/organisation must decide on their own DBS renewal policy and some authorities suggest a new check should be carried out every 3 years, or when the individual changes job.

How Far Back Does a Basic DBS Check Go?

Basic DBS checks only show unspent convictions or conditional cautions, so the DBS check will only ‘go back’ to these convictions if they are not spent.

Depending on the conviction will depend on how long it will remain unspent – more serious convictions can never become spent.

Error Free Online Application

The DBS service rejects all applications that are not completed correctly or miss out information that is essential for the check. This causes frustrating delays. With our automatic checking process, there’s nothing to worry about! The application process is error-proof. You are notified of, and can correct errors at each stage of an application. This makes sure that you get the DBS check quickly without experiencing unnecessary delays.

What is a Basic DBS Certificate Used For?

  • For a current job, new job, or volunteer work.
  • Additional credibility when applying for a position.
  • Visa application for UK residents.
  • Self-employed people can use the certificate to increase customer confidence.
  • Vetting people who are looking for accommodation.
  • For any other purpose.

Who Receives the DBS Certificate?

The Certificate is sent directly to the applicant who is being checked.

It is up to the applicant to decide who can see their Certificate. Using the Aaron’s Department system, they can allow a Nominated Signatory to view the results of their DBS check as soon as they are available and without waiting for a printed certificate. In the case when criminal information is found on the PNC, then the permission to view the outcome of the check electronically is withdrawn automatically, and the organisation has to wait for the applicant to provide the paper certificate.

As of 2013, to ensure the applicant is protected against errors and to guarantee the right of the applicant to decide to who they show the information, DBS Certificates are issued to the applicant only.

What Is A Basic CRB Check?

A Basic CRB check contains a filtered list of convictions and conditional cautions from the Police National Computer (PNC) that are considered unspent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (ROA) 1974.

These CRB checks have now been replaced by the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Checks, which are functionally identical.

Why Aaron’s Department is a Great Choice for your Basic DBS Checks

We are a Registered Body with the UK Government, so we can assure you that the DBS check will be processed fast, and the Basic Certificate will be returned promptly. This is the fastest and easiest way for employers to request a Basic DBS check.

When using a Registered Body, you don’t have to wait for ID checking procedures, which can take a significant amount of time. Register with Aaron’s Department today, it is fast, free, and you can sign up and start getting your first Basic DBS results within hours.

Basic DBS Check for the Self-Employed

Someone who is self-employed can only obtain a basic check as an individual, and this will show all unspent convictions. The eligibility for this check is not restricted by any job role and is available to everyone. More information on this is available on our DBS Checks for self-employed page. 

How Much Does A Basic DBS Check Cost (UK)?

At Aaron’s Department, you can have a Basic DBS Check on an individual for as little as £18 (the standard Government fee), plus an admin fee as low as £3.11! You can read more on our FAQ page, How Much Does a Basic DBS Check Cost?

Low Price Basic DBS Check for Employers!

Unlike many companies which offer to do cheap DBS checks and load their prices with annual fees and subscription plans, at Aaron’s Department we do not do this. Our DBS fees are simple, easy to understand, and have no hidden costs (and they’re low to begin with!).

Additional free credit is given, depending on the number of checks that your organisation pays for in advance. If you know you’ll be needing a lot of DBS checks in future, you can reduce the admin fee to as low as £3.11!

To apply for a basic DBS check, you can sign up now for free, and start using our quick and easy service, backed up by our fantastic support team!