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How To Apply For A DBS Certificate?

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Firstly, you do need to be 16 years and older to apply for a Basic DBS certificate - so if you are under 16 - you’ll just have to wait I am afraid - but it is not a legal requirement so that doesn’t prevent you from babysitting.


If you are over 16, it is super simple to apply for a Basic DBS via the government website at /request-copy-criminal-record. 


Before you sit down to complete your application online make sure that you have the following information and documentation to hand: 


  1.  Your Full Name or Any Name changes that you have had in the past - If you were adopted and had a name change or if you use your middle name as your first name because you don't like your first name make sure to put your first name down as it appears on your Birth certificate


  1.  All of your addresses for the last 5 years and the dates that you lived there including postcode locations. It is important to note that there cannot be any gaps in your living locations which is a bit tricky if you are a student and have lived in various houses over the years but it is super important. You will need one document with your proof of current address on it too. ie Bank statement or driver's license.


  1. You need to have your Passport and Passport number ready. You do not need to have a UK passport, it just needs to be your passport and a valid one at that.


  1. If you have a National Insurance Number that is useful to have. Don't worry if you haven’t been provided with a National Insurance number yet (normally it gets created when you start getting paid via an employer).  If you don’t have one you’ll leave this section blank.


  1. If you have a Drivers's License or a provisional Drivers license then that is helpful too but again if you don't have one that is fine.


  1. Lastly, you need to have a valid form of payment for the £23 fee.  This can be credit card, debit card, google, or apple pay.


Now before you start, an important point - If you go onto a search engine to apply for your DBS you will see that there are lots and lots of companies offering to get a DBS for you. Do not use these companies. They are super expensive as they add their service fee on top of the cost of a DBS and all they are doing is filling in the form on your behalf! 


Applying for a DBS yourself is really safe and quick to do online so make sure you are directly on the website!


Now with all the information prepared you can easily go through the process of setting up a Government account and providing them with all of the information for the DBS service to identify you and check the relevant police records.


Once you have completed the process and made your payment you will receive an email from the DBS office indicating that your paper document will be sent to you separately in the post.  


You also receive an authorisation code that allows you to view your DBS online. It can take up to 14 days for the actual paper document to arrive in the post but less than 5 days for your authorization code to arrive which is useful if you are wanting to show your document to someone sooner rather than later.


Your new certificate will ideally be nice and clean with nothing to report, but be aware it will show any unspent cautions, reprimands, convictions, or any warnings that you may have been given in the past so it should not be a surprise if these do show up on the certificate when you apply for it if you have had criminal activity in the past.


You can now use your new certificate (or the authorisation code) to promote the fact that you have a recent DBS certificate and show it to parents when they ask.


We would love to hear from you about how you got on getting your DBS certificate.

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