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0300 7900 126

Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks

Care Inspectorate Wales pen lying on registration application form

Information about how to apply for DBS checks.

We want to make sure that people receiving services are safe. 

The DBS is responsible for:

  • Processing requests for criminal records checks
  • Deciding whether it is appropriate for a person to be placed on or removed from a barred list
  • Placing or removing people from the DBS children’s barred list and adults’ barred list for Wales, Northern Ireland and England.

We are required to share information with DBS where necessary.

Changes to how you obtain a DBS identification check (ID check)

We are changing the process for undertaking DBS and Identity Verification (IDV) checks from 1 July 2021.

From this date, you will no longer be required to attend a virtual or face-to-face IDV checks at a CIW office during your working hours. You will be able to use the IDV service provided at a local Post Office. There is a small administration charge of £12 for this service, payable by the applicant (only once all the correct documentation has been provided).

The post office solution provides:

  • IDV check appointments at 191 locations across Wales
  • appointments 6 days a week, Monday to Saturday
  • appointments times between the hours of 9am and 5.30pm (individual Post Office opening times to be considered before attending)

Please visit our FAQs page for the latest DBS changes and requirements in response to Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Who must apply for a DBS check

All social care workers in Wales must hold a current DBS certificate which has an ‘Enhanced with Barred List’ check for the relevant work force area. Most people will be able to get their check through their employer or an umbrella body.

If this is not possible and you want to apply to register with us or you need to renew your certificate, we can help you with your DBS check

You can apply for a DBS check using our online service if you are working in one of the following roles or are one of the following:

  • Registered person;
  • Responsible individual;
  • Child minder;
  • Child minder assistant; or
  • Household member (of a child minder) 

How to apply for a DBS check

  1. You must contact our office to request a DBS check on 0300 7900 126 selecting option 3
  2. We will confirm if you are eligible for a check, if you are unable to get your check through your employer
  3. Once confirmed, we will refer you to our third party provider
  4. You will receive an email confirmation from our third party provider that will include the log in details  you will need to complete your online DBS application
  5. You must use these details to log in to our online service and complete your DBS check application
  6. As part of your DBS application you will required to attend a  Post Office local to where you live to confirm your identity. The online application form will ask you to select the identity documentation you will be taking to the Post Office.
  7. Once you have selected your identity documentation, and provided the required information, the online system will generate a barcode.
  8. You will need to take your barcode and the identity documentation selected to a Post Office where they will verify your identity.
  9. Once the Post Office has verified your identity, they will confirm this with our third party provider
  10. Our third party provider will counter sign your DBS application and will send it to DBS for processing
  11. DBS will complete their checks and issue you with your DBS certificate. They will also tell us that your check has been completed and its outcome
  12. If a certificate contains ‘positive’ information for example, convictions or barred listings then we will consider this further.
  13. If you have registered with the DBS Update service, your DBS certificate remains up to date for as long as you maintain your annual subscription. Therefore, you are not required to attend IDV checks every three years, providing your subscription remains active and/or there is no change to any information contained on your DBS check. Further information on how to subscribe to the update service can be found here.

Can I use my current DBS certificate when I apply to register?

For most services you may use your current DBS certificate to support your application to register if:

  • It is no more than three months old since it was issued
  • It is for an enhanced with barred list check and relates to the workforce area you are applying for
  • We have seen your original certificate.

If you cannot meet the above requirements, you will need to complete a new DBS application.

Register with the DBS Update Service

The DBS Update Service (External link) lets you keep your DBS certificate up-to-date so you can take it with you when you move jobs or roles within the same workforce area. 

By registering with the DBS Update Service means that you do not need to renew your certificate as long as you maintain your annual subscription and your certificate remains ‘current’ – that is no new information becomes available. 

You can register for the DBS Update Service when completing your online application form.

If you choose to subscribe to the Update Service before April 1 2019, Welsh Government will pay your £13 fee via our online service. If you subscribe, we will need to see the original certificate you used to subscribe to the service (if it contains information) and have permission from you to carry out periodic status checks of your online certificate.

The Update Service is operated by DBS. More information and guidance is available on their website. (External link)

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