Basic DBS Check

What is a Basic DBS Check?

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.

When requested, the applicant will receive the result of the check in the form of a Basic DBS Certificate through the post. On top of this, employers will be able to see whether the certificate has come back clear or not. 

Can I Apply for a Basic DBS Check?

Any individual, employer, organisation, or charity can apply for a Basic DBS check (with the applicants' permission) and can be requested for any purpose.

For example, an organisation may request one if the individual's role is not eligible for the Standard or Enhanced checks, but they still want a check for the purpose of employment. An individual could request one for themselves to find out about any information held about them by the Police National Computer (PNC).

If the role which will be carried out involves working with vulnerable adults or children, a Standard or Enhanced DBS check will need to be applied for.

If you are unsure, you can always contact us, and we will be happy to assist you.


Please Note:

At Aaron's Department, we do not offer a Basic check for individuals, and 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.

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.


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

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.


What is an Unspent Conviction?

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.

Some convictions will never become spent, and they can be found on the Government's website.

Below is a more detailed description of how long it takes convictions to become spent.


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 DBS check from the candidate. Only a Registered Body can apply for DBS checks for organisations and employers.

We offer additional DBS guidance for employers, which can be found by visiting our DBS For Employers information page.

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

Disclosure and Barring Service Basic checks for individuals

How Can a Basic DBS Certificate be Used?

Some examples include:

  • 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.

Basic DBS Check Criteria

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


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

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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?

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.

Can I Apply for a DBS Check if I Don't Have All the Data?

No. You cannot apply for any level of DBS check (Basic, Standard, or Enhanced) if you do not have all the necessary personal information.

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 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 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).


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 needed, 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 that 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 jobs.


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



They log in and fill out the Basic DBS application.



The candidate shows you the required documents.



You confirm you have seen them, and press send.*



The application is processed by the DBS, and your applicant receives their DBS Certificate!

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

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.

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 Receives the DBS 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.

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!


Cost Of A Basic DBS Check

At Aaron's Department, you can receive a Basic DBS Check on an individual from as little as £23 (the standard Government fee), plus £3.97 admin fee!

You can read more about the cost of a Basic DBS Check using our online system by visiting our pricing page.