🚨 Criminal Record Checks

Summary

πŸ’‘

Agencies need evidence that you have a valid enhanced criminal record check, called a DBS check in England & Wales. If you have lived continuously in a foreign country for more than 6 months over the past 5 years, you will also need to get an overseas police check from that country.

Key Information

If you have done a DBS check and registered for the Update Service at the time, you get a Gold Star ⭐️

All you will need to do is provide a scan of your DBS certificate and let them know you're registered with the Update Service. They will need to see the original hard copy certificate at the interview, so if you've misplaced that you'll need to start again.

If you're not registered to the Update Service, read on...

πŸ‘‰ Step 1: Collect documents

The agency will send you a form to complete. You will also need to scan your proof of identity documents to attach to the form. The same list of documents from your ID check applies... this can include:

  • Passport
  • Driving licence
  • Birth certificate
  • Marriage certificate
  • Proof of address documents, such as a mortgage statement, bank statement, credit card bill, utility bill or more.

There is a comprehensive list from the Government website here.

πŸ‘‰ Step 2: Get documents checked

These physical documents need to be checked to confirm they are valid before the check can be submitted. Your locum agency will either send someone to you to do this, or ask you to go to a local Post Office to do this.

πŸ‘‰ Step 3: Receive certificate

The locum agency will submit the forms to the DBS. It usually takes around 4 weeks for them to finalise the check.

They will send you a hard copy certificate to your house in the post. Keep this safe - you will need it in the future.

Let the agency know when this has arrived. They may ask you to send them over a scan so they have it on their file.

πŸ‘‰ Step 4: Register for the Update Service

The most important step in the process...!

The Update Service makes your DBS certificate β€˜portable’. This means that any Trust or another locum agency can rely on your previous certificate without making you apply for another one each time. It only costs Β£13/year.

You have to have registered on the Update Service within 28 days of the original DBS certificate being issued, so don't delay!

You can read more on the Government website here.

This information is written for DBS checks for England and Wales. The process is similar for PVG and Access NI checks for Scotland and Northern Ireland, although there is no Update Service for those.

Overseas Police Checks

If you have you been continuously in a foreign country for more than 6 months over the past 5 years, you need to complete a police check from that country.

Most commonly this will apply to doctors who:

  • Are an IMG or studied overseas
  • Are returning from an F3 in Australia
  • Travelled and lived in one country for more than six months

You should apply for this check ASAP. The Government website here has a set of steps and contact details for the most common countries.

If this is in a foreign language, you may need to get a certified translation into English. Your locum agency will let you know what their policy is on this.

Action Steps

Do you want to work in England, Scotland or Northern Ireland?

England

Are you already registered with the DBS Update Service?

Yes
Find and scan your original DBS certificate, and keep this safe for the interview
Let the locum agency know you are registered on the Update Service. You may get asked for your yearly renewal statement from Update Service too.
No
Follow the four steps above to start a new DBS check.
Scotland or Northern Ireland
Start the process of registering for a PVG or Access NI check as applicable.

Have you lived continuously in a foreign country for more than 6 months over the past 5 years?

Yes
Let the locum agency know
Start the process of getting your overseas check, using the information above, and keep your locum agency updated
No

No actions.

FAQs

I have my DBS from when I started F1, will this count?

  • Only if you registered with the DBS Update Service within 28 days of when that certificate was issued to you. If you didn't you'll need to repeat the check this time around.

I registered with an agency previously and they did a DBS check, can I use this?

  • Only if you registered with the DBS Update Service within 28 days of when that certificate was issued to you. If you didn't you'll need to repeat the check this time around.

I want to work in both England and Scotland, do I need to do a DBS check and a PVG check?

  • Yes, you will need to do both.