Disclosure Services - DBS Checks - CRB Checks - Criminal Record Checks

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Frequently Asked Questions

Please find below our frequently asked questions and their answers. If you cant find the answer to your question below then please contact us:

  1. I currently use or intend to use the e-Bulk service, will the decision to review the ISA VB scheme affect me either sending e-applications or receiving e-certificate results?
  2. Can I still use the ISA Adult First service?
  3. Why is the Vetting and Barring Scheme being reviewed?
  4. What is the DBS's definition of a "Volunteer"?
  5. What is the online tracking service?
  6. How do I access the service if I don't have an ‘online' account with Disclosure Services?
  7. What information will I need to track an application?

1. I currently use or intend to use the e-Bulk service, will the decision to review the ISA VB scheme affect me either sending e-applications or receiving e-certificate results?

No, as long as you continue to use Disclosure Services' current system then you will still be able to submit e-applications and receive e-disclosure results.

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2. Can I still use the ISA Adult First service?

Whilst the remodelling process for the Vetting and Barring Scheme takes place, eligible clients can continue to use the ISA Adult First service. This service will be maintained and offered by the DBS until the scope of the Independent Safeguarding Authority's (ISA) Vetting and Barring Scheme (VBS) is finalised and alternative arrangements are in place. 

28 June 2010

DBS can start accepting applications for Enhanced and Standard DBS checks on new paper application form

12 July 2010

Last date for ordering stocks of the current disclosure application form

20 July 2010

Last date that DBS can receive and process paper applications on the current disclosure application form

26 July 2010

DBS to start processing applications for Enhanced and Standard DBS checks on the new paper application forms


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3. Why is the Vetting and Barring Scheme being reviewed?

In its recent document ‘The Coalition: Our programme for government', the Government set out its aim to ‘review the criminal records and vetting and barring regime and scale it back to common sense levels'. This remodelling is being carried out to deliver that promise.

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4. What is the DBS's definition of a "Volunteer"?

If you do need a DBS check, the DBS will provide this "free of charge" for volunteers, but only if the volunteer is:

"a person who is engaged in any activity which involves spending time, unpaid (except for travelling and other approved out-of-pocket expenses), doing something which aims to benefit someone (individuals or groups) other than or in addition to close relatives".

Some people can be referred to as volunteers, but do not actually meet the DBS's criteria to get a free check. This is because they may receive, or expect to receive, a benefit, such as remuneration or a credit towards a qualification. For example, students on training placement; people on work placements; foster parents/carers must pay for their checks.

Also, do not forget that these "free checks" are in fact subsidised by all of the other fee-paying customers. It is therefore only fair to expect that the DBS will perform regular audits on volunteer applications to ensure "free of charge" checks are not being abused. If an application is marked incorrectly as a volunteer, and this comes to their attention, the DBS will contact the organisation that submitted the application to inform them of this error and may then make a retrospective charge to recover the cost of the application.

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5. What is the online tracking service?

The online tracking service provides a facility for applicants, employers to track the progress of their Disclosure applications.

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6. How do I access the service if I don't have an ‘online' account with Disclosure Services?

To access the tracking service, simply click on the link on the DBS's homepage www.crb.homeoffice.gov.uk or alternatively if you wish to access it now, click Here to access online tracking

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7. What information will I need to track an application?

To track an individual application you will need to know two pieces of information:

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