Anyone who applies for a standard or enhanced criminal record check through the DBS can choose to subscribe to the DBS Update Service (basic disclosures are not eligible).
This service enables employers (with the candidate’s permission) to carry out an instant and free online check, known as a ‘Status Check’, which reveals whether the DBS Certificate is still up to date, or whether new information may have been added to the person’s criminal record (for example, new convictions). Individual disclosures must still be viewed by departments.
This means that a candidate may not necessarily have to repeat checks when moving jobs, working for multiple employers, or when they need a DBS disclosure for both work and voluntary activities. However, there is only portability as long as the new activity is within the same ‘workforce’ and requires the same level of checking.
So, an enhanced disclosure to work with children cannot be accepted if the new job/activity is with at risk adults, or vice versa. In such cases a new disclosure will be required.
Status checks can only be requested where the department could legally request a new DBS check for the role that the individual is applying for.
Departments are reminded that they must comply with the DBS Code of Practice.
The DBS website includes a detailed employer guide.
The DBS will update the registered individual’s criminal record conviction and barring information weekly and their non-conviction information (for example, an arrest that does not result in any charges being brought) every 9 months.
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