Essential tips for DBS checking employees

Most organisations obtain DBS checks so that they can check that the person they want to employ doesn’t have any criminal convictions that would prevent them from doing the role. In some circumstances, an enhanced DBS check is a requirement, an example being roles that involve working with children and vulnerable adults. Here are some useful tips regarding the DBS checking process.

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In January 2016, the BBC reported that the High Court had ruled that some aspects of the DBS checking system were unlawful after a case where two people were deemed unsuitable for jobs due to having more than one conviction for minor offences that were committed many years before. However, the DBS checking system is still in use, although from 2018 the system will undergo changes which employers need to be aware of.

Working before a DBS check and changes to the process

If someone isn’t working in a regulated activity (with children or vulnerable adults) it is possible to be employed before a DBS check is completed. A DBS Adult First Check can, in exceptional circumstances, enable someone to work with adults before a full DBS certificate is issued. Individuals obtaining their own basic DBS disclosure, will from 2018, have to have their identity verified in person by a DBS registered organisation.

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Insurance and regulated activities

Some professional indemnity insurance requires employers to have DBS certificates for those working within that particular business. Additionally, there needs to be an awareness of what constitutes regulated activities as this can affect some public liability insurance policies and requires you to obtain Enhanced Disclosure from the DBS for individuals working within those areas.

Registered organisations and extra checks

Organisations carrying out DBS checks on behalf of others have to be registered with the government as a registered body or responsible organisation. While using an organisation such as to carry out DBS checks is fine, there are many other non-registered companies offering this service so be aware. Also, if you are thinking of employing people who have lived outside the UK for more than 12 months then additional checks will be required.

If you are an employer or work in recruitment, this should have provided some additional information so you can carry out checks more efficiently and be aware of the changes that the DBS is making.

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