What actually is a DBS Disclosure? A handy guide

You’ve probably heard of a “DBS Disclosure” – but do you know exactly what a DBS Disclosure actually is?

And what is the “Disclosure and Barring Service” or “Criminal Records Bureau”?

If you work in any of positions discussed in our latest blog, there’s a good chance you might need to find out a little bit more about these. So what actually is a DBS Disclosure?

Defining a DBS/CRB Disclosure

A DBS/CRB Disclosure is a document containing information held by the police and government departments.

It helps employers and voluntary organisations make safer and more responsible recruitment decisions and prevents unsuitable people from working with vulnerable groups, including children.

A department of the Home Office called the Disclosure and Barring Service, previously called the Criminal Records Bureau, is responsible for providing Disclosures.

If you’re applying for a check, your employer should inform you which level of check you require.

Members of the public cannot obtain these Disclosures – they’re only available to professions or organisations listed in the Exceptions Order to the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.

What are the types of DBS Check?

1. Standard DBS/CRB Disclosure – this type of Disclosure is for people entering certain industries, such as the legal and accountancy professions.

Standard checks include any convictions, cautions, reprimands and warnings held in England and Wales as reflected on the police’s national computer.

It can also include the most relevant convictions in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

2. Enhanced DBS/CRB Disclosure – these Disclosures are for people who have a much greater degree of contact with children or vulnerable adults.

This includes people who regularly care for, supervise, train or are in sole charge of these groups.

Teachers, scout leaders and carers are just some examples of roles that would require an Enhanced DBS Disclosure.

Enhanced Disclosures are also issued for certain statutory purposes, such as gaming and lottery licences.

An Enhanced Disclosure includes the same checks as the standard DRB/CRB Disclosure as well as any additional information held by local police that’s considered relevant to the profession being applied for.

3. Basic Disclosure – this is the lowest level of Disclosure and is available to anyone.

Termed as a “criminal conviction certificate” in Part V of the Police Act 1997, DBS/CRB does not offer basic disclosures as Disclosure Scotland provides this type of Disclosure.

It contains details of any convictions considered unspent under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 or states that there are no such convictions.

A Basic Disclosure is not specific to any job and may be used more than once.

Employers need to remember that a DBS Disclosure has no expiry date. Any information included will be exact at the time of completion.

It depends solely on the employer if and when a new Disclosure is needed.

To sum up: What actually is a DBS Disclosure?

With any luck this post will have given you a bit more of an understanding about exactly what a DBS Disclosure is.

If you want any more information, don’t hesitate to give us a call for a no-obligation chat.