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  • What Is a Basic DBS Check

Any organisation can, with the applicant's permission, request a Basic DBS check for any reason. It 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.


What Is the Police National Computer (PNC)?

The PNC is a large-scale computer database system that stores information of both national and local significance. Linked to the Schengen Information System (SIS II), which encompasses most of Europe, the PNC provides an essential service to the police, the UK Law Enforcement and criminal justice agencies in the UK.

The PNC is used to enter and view information on properties, vehicles, people, and offences. PNC Wikipedia page

A man views a large PC monitor which has PNC written on it, and contains a large amount of human silhouettes, from a frog perspective.

What Is the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (ROA) 1974?

The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act offers minor offenders a second chance by not including spent convictions in a Basic DBS check Certificate, represented through the transformation of a man from wearing prison clothes to wearing a suit.

The Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (ROA) 1974 and reformed on the 10th March 2014 aims to rehabilitate offenders who have not been convicted of a serious offence. It applies for periods after which convictions or cautions are regarded for most purposes as spent. Offenders with spent convictions and cautions have the right not to disclose them when applying for most jobs, or when buying insurance.

Updated guidance on the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974

What Are Unspent Convictions?

Unspent convictions are all those sentences in which the period after which the sentence can be effectively ignored hasn't passed yet. After this period, also known as “rehabilitation period”, passes the conviction is considered spent and isn’t included in a Basic disclosure.

Sentences with a buffer period (sentence length includes time spent on licence).

A tabular representation of the time it takes for a sentence to become spent, depending on the age of the convict and the severity of the offence.

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 time-scale 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 time-scale, then the case is finalised, and there is no prosecution.


The Basic DBS Check Is Now Available Directly Through the Disclosure and Barring Service

As of 1st January 2018, Basic DBS checks for any organisation whose candidates are living or 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 (like Aaron's Department), and have permission to apply for a check from the candidate. Only a Registered Body can apply for DBS checks for organisations. Check our DBS check guidance for employers.

Individuals wanting to apply for a DBS check for themselves should do so directly via the DBS website.

Disclosure and Barring Service Basic checks for individuals


Can I Apply for a Basic DBS Check?

Any employer, charity or individual can apply for a Basic DBS check with the applicant's permission. They are available to anyone for any purpose.

An organisation can use them to help assess an individual’s risk to the business and ensure that they don’t put the wrong person in a position that could cause damage.

Examples: delivery drivers, cashiers, cleaner and warehouse roles.

If the role is working with vulnerable groups - adults and/or children, you should apply for an Enhanced DBS check or Standard DBS check. If you need guidance, please call us- one of our expert team will be happy to help you.

An individual can apply for themselves to find out about any information held about them on the PNC system.

Basic Disclosure for Organisations

Your organisation can apply for an individuals' Basic DBS check if they meet the following criteria:

1. The individual lives or works, or has lived or worked in the UK or Wales;

2. The individual is 16 years old or more;

3. The individual has permitted you to apply for a check in their name.

What Information Do You Need to Apply for a Basic DBS Check in an Individual's Name?

Since the Basic check is a survey of the candidate’s criminal record, you will need personal details from them, including:

  • Full name and any names the candidate has used in the past
  • Date of birth
  • Place of birth
  • Five years of address history
  • The candidate’s National Insurance Number, if the candidate has one
  • Finally, and most importantly, you need the candidate’s written consent which gives you the right to process the application on their behalf

What Happens if I Don't Have any of the Data Needed to Apply for a Basic DBS Check?

You must provide all of the above mentioned personal details. You can not apply for a check if you don’t have all the necessary information.


How Does the ID Checking 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 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.


The Process for a Basic DBS Check

There are up to five stages a DBS check can go through until completed. The Basic DBS check only goes through stages one, two and five of the five possible stages:

The five stages DBS checks go through, and a clarification which check goes through which stages in a tabular representation.
Stage 1
The application is received and validated by the DBS and then is checked for errors or empty fields. Within a day, this application is entered in the DBS system or returned to the counter-signatory to be corrected.
Stage 2
The Basic DBS check is approved and goes through the second stage of progress. At this stage, the applicant is checked against the Police National Computer (PNC) for relevant information.
Stage 5
The Certificate is printed under very secure conditions, is issued and then sent to the applicant.

What Is a Basic DBS Certificate?

The outcome of a Basic DBS check is a Basic DBS Certificate. The Certificate is a printed document which contains the applicant’s data, and information on any unspent offences (if any exist).

How Long Does a Basic DBS Certificate last?

There is no official expiry date of any DBS Certificate. A DBS Certificate is a snapshot of what is held at that moment in time on the PNC and is obsolete from the moment it is printed. It will not contain information of convictions which happened after its production.

The organisation itself must decide on its DBS renewal policy.


The Benefits of Using Aaron's Department's Online Service

Our system has been designed to streamline and make the process of applying for a DBS certificate as efficient as possible.

An Easy Way to Request a Basic DBS Check

Aaron's Department makes it easy to request
a DBS Basic disclosure.

A typical application for an applicant without convictions using Aaron's Department:

  1. You enter the name and email of your applicant into the Aaron’s Department system
  2. The system sends an e-mail invitation to the candidate
  3. The candidate logs in and fills in the Basic DBS application form
  4. The candidates bring you the required documents
  5. You confirm you have seen the documents and press send
  6. You receive a confirmation if the search is clear very quickly
  7. The application is processed, and the DBS certificate sent to the applicant
The steps the Basic DBS check goes through when using Aaron's Department, from entering the applicant's name in our system to the printing of the DBS Certificate.

Error Free Online Application

The DBS service rejects all requests that are not filled correctly or miss information that is essential for the check. This causes frustrating delays. With our automatic checking process, you need not worry. 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 a result quickly without experiencing unnecessary delays.

How Can People Use the Basic DBS Certificate?

  • 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 Will Receive the Basic Disclosure Certificate?

The Certificate is sent directly to the applicant which filled in the application.

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 who they show the information to, both paper and online DBS Certificates are issued to the applicant only.


Why Aaron's Department Is Your Organisation's Best Choice for Doing Basic DBS Checks?

We are connected directly to 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 to request a DBS check. When using a Registered Body, there is no need 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.

Our fastest result for a DBS check in 2018 is just 1 Hour and 34 Minutes!


Low Price Basic DBS Check for Organisations!

For organisations, we offer low price Basic checks. 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 there are no hidden costs.

Additional free credits are given, depending on the number of checks that your organisation pays for in advance.

Sign up now for free, and start using our quick and easy service which is backed up by our fantastic support!

Individuals, please read this!

You can apply directly from the DBS website!

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 go directly to the UK Government's website for a Basic check.



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