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Apply for CQC-countersigned Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check

  • Organisations we regulate

Do I need a DBS (criminal record) check?

When you send us an application, you may need to undergo a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check (formerly a Criminal Records Bureau or CRB check) to prove you are not barred from working with children or vulnerable adults.

Your DBS number must be CQC-countersigned

You must send us a CQC-countersigned DBS number. You might have another DBS number from a previous job, but it's important to remember that a CQC-countersigned DBS number is different. If your DBS number is not countersigned by CQC it will not be valid. This means we will have to reject your application.

The following people usually need to complete the CQC DBS check process:

  • Individuals applying for registration to carry on or manage a care service:
  • All partners
  • Registered managers

Nominated individuals do not need a CQC-countersigned DBS check. Providers must, however, carry out their own DBS checks on all their nominated individuals and may be asked to supply evidence of these.

The guidance document below explains who needs to apply for a DBS check and how the process works.

We have also produced guidance for providers and managers of adult social care services who are accepting people on placements from Department for Work and Pensions employment programmes.

We don't currently accept certification through the DBS update service.

How it works

1: Register

You can register with us for a CQC DBS online using the Post Office's CQC Disclosure website.

Please note: we recommend using Internet Explorer 8 (or above) or Firefox when using the online CQC Disclosures form. Some users have reported problems using other browsers.

We will then review your information to see whether we can proceed with your application. If we reject your application, we will call you first to explain the reasons.

Our working hours are Monday to Friday 8.30 am to 5.30 pm. We aim to release DBS applications within a maximum of five working days, depending on verification checks.

2: Apply online

Once we have approved your initial registration, you will be sent log in details to complete your DBS application online. The system will also ask you what documents you will be using to prove your identity.

When this is complete, you will be able to print a referral letter along with a unique barcode for each ID document. You will also be given information about when you can visit a Post Office to show your ID and make payment.

3: Show your ID documents

The referral letter must be taken to one of the Post Offices that offers the service in the allocated time stated in the letter. You must also take the fee stated in the letter and all identification used within the application for verification.

The Post Office will make a charge of £17.50 for this service, which is included in the fee in the referral letter. The full fee of £61.50 must be paid in cash or card when the referral form is taken in, cheques are no longer valid.

Once the Post Office has checked your documents and processed your payment, your application will be sent to DBS, who will process it and send your disclosure directly to you. When you have your disclosure you will be able to apply to register with us for a regulated role.

Last updated:
19 October 2017


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