What Documents Are Needed for a DBS Check? 2022

what documents are needed for a dbs check

What Documents Are Needed for a DBS Check?

The documents which are needed will depend on which route is being taken, and where the applicant is from. 

UK National, or a Non-UK National doing Voluntary Work Routes

The documents the applicant will need to provide depend on the route the application takes. Route 1 would be the ideal route, but if this is not possible, it will go to Route 2 or 3.

Route 1

(UK National, or Non-UK National doing voluntary work)

They must be able to show from the table below:

  • One document from Group 1.
  • Plus 2 further documents from either Group 1, or Group 2a or Group 2b.

At least one of the documents must show the current address.

(If the applicant is unable to show these documents and is a non-UK National applying for voluntary work, they may need to be fingerprinted.)

Route 2

(UK National Only)

If they don’t have any of the documents in Group 1, then they must be able to show,

  • One document from Group 2a.
  • Plus 2 further documents from either Group 2a or 2b.

At least one of the documents must show the current address. The organisation conducting the ID check must then also use an appropriate external ID validation service to check the application.

Route 3

(UK Nationals Only)

Route 3 can only be used if it’s impossible to process the application through Routes 1 or 2.

For Route 3, the applicant must be able to show:

  • A birth certificate issued after the time of birth (UK, Isle of Man and Channel Islands).
  • One document from Group 2a.
  • 3 further documents from Group 2a or 2b.

At least one of the documents must show the current address, and if they can’t provide these documents, you may need to be fingerprinted.

 

Identity Documents

Group 1: Primary Identity Documents

Document

Notes

Passport

Any current and valid passport

Biometric residence permit

UK

Current photocard driving licence (full or provisional)

UK, Isle of Man, and Channel Islands. From 8 June 2015, the paper counterpart to the photocard driving licence will not be valid and will no longer be issued by DVLA

Birth certificate, issued within 12 months of birth

UK, Isle of Man, and Channel Islands – including those issued by UK authorities overseas, for example embassies, High Commissions and HM Forces

Adoption certificate

UK and Channel Islands

Group 2a: Trusted Government Documents

Document

Notes

Current photocard driving licence, full or provisional.

All countries outside the UK (excluding the Isle of Man and Channel Islands)

Current driving licence (full or provisional) – paper version (if issued before 1998)

UK, Isle of Man, and Channel Islands

Birth certificate, issued after time of birth

UK, Isle of Man and Channel Islands

Marriage or civil partnership certificate

UK and Channel Islands

Immigration document, visa or work permit

Issued by a country outside the UK. Valid only for roles whereby the applicant is living and working outside of the UK. Visa/permit must relate to the non-UK country in which the role is based

HM Forces ID card

UK

Firearms licence

UK, Channel Islands and Isle of Man

*All driving licences must be valid.

 

Group 2b: Financial and Social History Documents

Document

Notes

Issue date and validity

Mortgage statement

UK

Issued in last 12 months

Bank or building society statement

UK and Channel Islands

Issued in last 3 months

Bank or building society statement

Countries outside the UK

Issued in last 3 months – branch must be in the country where the applicant lives and works

Bank or building society account opening confirmation letter

UK

Issued in last 3 months

Credit card statement

UK

Issued in last 3 months

Financial statement, for example pension or endowment

UK

Issued in last 12 months

P45 or P60 statement

UK and Channel Islands

Issued in last 12 months

Council Tax statement

UK and Channel Islands

Issued in last 12 months

Letter of sponsorship from future employment provider

Non-UK only – valid only for applicants residing outside of the UK at time of application

Must still be valid

Utility bill

UK (not mobile telephone bill)

Issued in last 3 months

Benefit statement, for example Child Benefit, Pension

UK

Issued in last 3 months

Central or local government, government agency, or local council document giving entitlement, for example from the Department for Work and Pensions, the Employment Service, HMRC

UK and Channel Islands

Issued in last 3 months

EEA National ID card

Must still be valid

Cards carrying the PASS accreditation logo

UK, Isle of Man and Channel Islands

Must still be valid

Letter from head teacher or college principal

UK: for 16 to 19 year olds in full-time education, only used in exceptional circumstances if other documents cannot be provided

Must still be valid

They are a Non-UK National Applicant

An applicant who wants to carry out paid work and isn’t a UK national must be able to show:

  • 1 primary document.
  • 2 supporting documents.

If an applicant is unable to provide this, then they can’t submit a DBS check because the right to work in the UK can’t be established, but they can’t use any other route.

Non-UK national applicants for voluntary work must use Route 1.

Non-UK nationals who are eligible for a DBS check and receiving payment for work must use the paid work route.

However, Route 1 can be used by adult household members:

  • In a fostering household.
  • In a child-minding household.
  • In a host family.
  • Living where ‘work with children’ takes place e.g. living in a boarding school.

Documents for Paid Working Non-UK Nationals

The documents must be originals, not copies. At least one of the documents must show the applicant’s current address.

A current passport or passport card showing that the holder is a national of Ireland.

A current document issued by the Home Office to a family member of an EEA or Swiss citizen, and which indicates that the holder is permitted to stay in the United Kingdom indefinitely.

A current Biometric Immigration Document (Biometric Residence Permit) issued by the Home Office to the holder indicating that the person named is allowed to stay indefinitely in the UK, or has no time limit on their stay in the UK.

Online evidence of immigration status. Either via the View and Prove service or using the BRP or BRC online service. Issued by the Home Office to the employer or prospective employer, which indicates that the named person may stay in the UK and is permitted to do the work in question. Must be valid. Note: this includes the EUSS digital status confirmation.

A current passport endorsed to show that the holder is exempt from immigration control, is allowed to stay indefinitely in the UK, has the right of abode in the UK, or has no time limit on their stay in the UK.

A current Immigration Status Document issued by the Home Office to the holder with an endorsement indicating that the named person is allowed to stay indefinitely in the UK or has no time limit on their stay in the UK, together with an official document giving the person’s permanent National Insurance number and their name issued by a government agency or a previous employer.

A current passport endorsed to show that the holder is allowed to stay in the UK and is currently allowed to do the type of work in question.

A current Biometric Immigration Document (Biometric Residence Permit) issued by the Home Office to the holder which indicates that the named person can currently stay in the UK and is allowed to do the work in question.

A current document issued by the Home Office to a family member of an EEA or Swiss citizen, and which indicates that the holder is permitted to stay in the United Kingdom for a time limited period and to do the type of work in question.

A frontier worker permit issued under regulation 8 of the Citizens’ Rights (Frontier Workers) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020.

A current Immigration Status Document containing a photograph issued by the Home Office to the holder with a valid endorsement indicating that the named person may stay in the UK, and is allowed to do the type of work in question, together with an official document giving the person’s permanent National Insurance number and their name issued by a government agency or a previous employer.

A document issued by the Home Office showing that the holder has made an application for leave to enter or remain under Appendix EU to the immigration rules on or before 30 June 2021 together with a Positive Verification Notice from the Home Office Employer Checking Service.

An Application Registration Card issued by the Home Office stating that the holder is permitted to take the employment in question, together with a Positive Verification Notice from the Home Office Employer Checking Service.

A Positive Verification Notice issued by the Home Office Employer Checking Service to the employer or prospective employer, which indicates that the named person may stay in the UK and is permitted to do the work in question.

Supporting Documents for Non-UK Applicants

The applicant must be able to show 2 documents from any of these groups.

Group 1

Document

Notes

Passport

Any current and valid passport

Biometric residence permit

UK

Current driving licence photocard, (full or provisional)

UK, Isle of Man and Channel Islands

Birth certificate, issued within 12 months of birth

UK, Isle of Man, and Channel Islands – including those issued by UK authorities overseas, for example embassies, High Commissions and HM Forces

Adoption certificate

UK and Channel Islands

*A passport or biometric residence permit can only be used as a supporting document if it’s not already been used as a primary document.

Group 2a

Document

Notes

Current driving licence photocard, (full or provisional)

All countries outside the EU (excluding the Isle of Man and Channel Islands)

Current paper version driving licence, full or provisional (if issued before 1998)

UK, Isle of Man and Channel Islands

Birth certificate, issued after time of birth

UK, Isle of Man and Channel Islands

Marriage or civil partnership certificate

UK and Channel Islands

Immigration document, visa, or work permit (for applicants living and working outside the UK)

Issued by the country where the role is based

HM Forces ID card

UK

Firearms licence

UK, Isle of Man, and Channel Islands

*All driving licences must be valid.

Group 2b

Document

Notes

Issue date and validity

Mortgage statement

UK

Issued in last 12 months

Bank or building society statement

UK and Channel Islands

Issued in last 3 months

Bank or building society statement (for applicants living and working outside the UK)

Countries outside the UK

Issued in last 3 months – branch must be in the country where the applicant lives and works

Bank or building society account opening confirmation letter

UK

Issued in last 3 months

Credit card statement

UK

Issued in last 3 months

Financial statement, for example pension or endowment

UK

Issued in last 12 months

P45 or P60 statement

UK and Channel Islands

Issued in last 12 months

Council Tax statement

UK and Channel Islands

Issued in last 12 months

Letter of sponsorship from future employment provider

Non-UK only – valid only for applicants residing outside of the UK at time of application

Must still be valid

Utility bill

UK, not including a mobile telephone bill

Issued in last 3 months

Benefit statement, for example Child Benefit, Pension

UK

Issued in last 3 months

Central or local government, government agency, or local council document giving entitlement, for example from the Department for Work and Pensions, the Employment Service, HMRC

UK and Channel Islands

Issued in last 3 months

EEA National ID card

Must still be valid

Cards carrying the PASS accreditation logo

UK, Isle of Man and Channel Islands

Must still be valid

Letter from head teacher or college principal

UK: for 16 to 19 year olds in full-time education, only used in exceptional circumstances if other documents cannot be provided

Must still be valid

DBS Checking Tips and Helpful Information

Applicants Who Have Been Adopted

If they were adopted before the age of 10, they do not need to provide their surname at birth. This is because the age of criminal responsibility is deemed to be 10 years, under the Children and Young Persons Act 1933, Chapter 12, Section 50.

This means that there is no possibility that an individual could have a criminal record in a name that was used until the age of 10.

Checking Driving Licences

Do not accept licences, other than those stated in the list of valid identity documents.

English, Welsh and Scottish driving licence numbers contain information about the applicant’s name, sex and date of birth. This information is written in a special format but can be gleaned and matched against the information provided by the applicant.

Please note that the date of birth on English, Welsh and Scottish driving licences, issued before 1977, is not recorded as a separate entry on the licence. The date of birth can be deciphered from the driving licence number and checked against the date of birth field on the application form.

For example, the format of the number for Christine Josephine Robinson, born 2 July 1975

R O B I N 7 5 7 0 2 5 C J 9 9 9 0 1

N N N N N Y M M D D Y I I C C C C C

N = first 5 letters of the surname (if the surname begins MAC or MC it is treated as MC for all)

Y = year of birth

M = month of birth (in the case of a female, the number represented by the first M will have the value 5 added to the first digit, for example, a female born in November (i.e. 11) would display ‘61’ in the MM boxes or if born in February (i.e. 02) would display ‘52’)

D = day of the month of birth

I = initial letter of the first two forenames – if only one, then 9 will replace the second letter – if the licence indicates that the applicant has a middle name, ensure that one has been provided in Section A

C = computer generated

For Northern Ireland, Isle of Man and Jersey driving licences the licence number is in a different format. The licence number is unique to the driver and the ‘name’ or ‘date of birth’ validation, as shown above, cannot be used.

Checking for Indicators of Fraud

Always check for signs of tampering when checking identity documents. Documents should be queried if they display any signs of damage, especially in the areas of personal details such as the name and the photograph. The following guidelines should help you look out for any suspicious signs when authenticating documents. The National Document Fraud Unit (NDFU) in the Home Office has published guidance on examining identity documents to detect basic forgeries.

Checking a Passport

Check the general quality and condition of the passport. Treat it with suspicion if it is excessively damaged; accidental damage is often used to conceal tampering.

Photographs should be examined closely for signs of damage to the laminate or for excessive glue or slitting of the laminate; these signs would indicate photo substitution. If the photograph appears excessively large, this might indicate an attempt to hide another photograph underneath. There should also be an embossed strip embedded into the laminate, which will catch a portion of the photograph.

Check there is no damage to this area. If the passport is from a foreign national, you can still follow the same procedures as above.

Her Majesty’s Passport Office has produced a guide to be used when checking passports for identification.

Checking Photo Driving Licences

Examine the licence for evidence of photo tampering or any amendment of the printed details.

Checking an Old-Style Driving Licence (no photograph)

Remove the document from the plastic wallet and check that it is printed on both sides.

It should have a watermark visible by holding the licence up to the light, and there should be no punctuation marks in the name or address.

The ‘Valid To’ date should be the day before the bearer’s 70th birthday (unless the bearer is already over 70).

The ‘Valid To’ date can therefore be cross-referenced with the applicant’s date of birth, detailed in Section A.

Checking a Birth Certificate

Birth certificates are not evidence of identity and are easily obtained. Although certificates issued at the time of birth may give more confidence that it belongs to the individual, unlike a recently issued certificate, they will not show if any information has been corrected or superseded by a new registration.

Check the quality of paper used; genuine certificates use a high grade. There should be a watermark visible when the document is held up to the light. Any signs of smoothness on the surface would indicate that the original text might have been washed or rubbed away. There should be no signs of tampering, changes using liquid paper, overwriting or spelling mistakes.

The following list provides some general information about certificate completion, which may help to establish whether the certificate and/or the details have been falsified. This is provided solely as a guide and is not exhaustive:

  • The certificate format used should be appropriate for the year of registration.
  • Only the surname should be entered in upper case, not the forename(s).
  • Dates of birth should be shown with the day and month in words and the year in figures.

The following information might indicate that the certificate has been altered:

  • Spacing between falsely added particulars might be irregular compared to original information – ‘thick’ or ‘thin’.
  • Spacing might infer particulars have been added.
  • False particulars might not have been aligned with other words.
  • Characters may not be of the same size or shape as the rest of the particulars.
  • The movement of handwriting may look mechanical and does not flow with the rest of the particulars.
  • Changes might not be consistent, e.g. parents’ surnames might be altered, but not the signatures.
  • The area around falsely added or removed particulars may react differently under ultraviolet light, i.e. show signs of staining – in addition, such areas of paper may appear thinner where the paper fibres have been disturbed by abrasion.

For more information on checking birth certificates, please refer to Her Majesty’s Passport Office document General Register Office guide to birth certificates.

Checking an EEA Photo Identity Card

Examine the card for evidence of photo tampering or any amendment of the printed details.

Checking an HM Forces ID Card

Examine the card for evidence of photo tampering or any amendment of the printed details.

Checking a Firearms Licence

Check the licence is printed on blue security paper with a Royal crest watermark and a faint pattern stating the words ‘Home Office’.

Examine the licence for evidence of photo tampering or any amendment of the printed details, which should include home address and date of birth.

The licence should be signed by the holder and bear the authorising signature of the chief of police for the area in which they live, or normally a person to whom his authority has been delegated.

Checking Online Evidence of Immigration Status

Ensure that evidence is always taken from a .gov.uk web address.

Further information on how to view evidence of immigration and right to work status can be found here.

Checking a Biometric Residence Permit

View the features of a permit and how to check a job applicant’s biometric residence permit seeing if they have a right to work in the UK.

Other Types of ID

Ensure all letters and statements are recent, i.e. within a three-month period. Do not accept documentation printed from the internet.

Check letter headed paper is used, bank headers are correct, and all documentation looks genuine. The address should be cross-referenced with that provided by the applicant.

What To Do If You Suspect False Identity or Documents

If you suspect that you have been presented with a false identity or documents at the time of application, do not proceed with the application process.

Report suspected identity fraud through the Action Fraud website.

Further information on identity fraud can be found on the Metropolitan police website.

If you suspect identity fraud once a DBS check has been submitted, you must call us on 03000 200 190.

You are also advised that under Section 8 of the Asylum and Immigration Act 1996 all employers in the United Kingdom are required to make basic document checks to help prevent anyone from working illegally.

By carrying out checks employers will be able to establish a defence for themselves if any of their employees are found to be working illegally at a later date.

Further details are available on the UK visas and immigration website or by calling the employer helpline on 0845 010 6677.

The Wrap-Up

Throughout our website we have detailed guidance on all aspects of the DBS checking process – from the different types of DBS checks, what they show, as well as who is eligible for which DBS check. 

To access this information, please use the menu bar at the top of this page to navigate your way around the website. 

If you are applying for a DBS check through Aaron’s Department, and are unsure on any of the information mentioned throughout this article (or any other matter), feel free to ring us on 0113 877 0171! 

Alternatively, you can always drop us an email at contact@aaronsdepartment.com.

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