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DBS Checks For The Self-Employed: Our Guide

checks for self-employed

If you’re your own boss, you may wonder about the rules surrounding DBS Checks for the self-employed.

Eligibility regarding DBS Checks isn’t always straightforward at the best of times. At uCheck we’re always on hand to explain which, if any, check you’re eligible for.

Whether you’re self-employed or working with self-employed contractors, it’s important to be aware of the regulations surrounding pre-employment screening.

In this blog we consider the issues and solutions surrounding DBS Checks for the self-employed.

What type of check are the self-employed eligible for?

The first thing to understand about DBS Checks for the self-employed, is that individuals are only eligible to apply for a Basic Check on themselves.

What is a Basic CRB Check?

A Basic CRB (now DBS) Check is a check of any conditional cautions and unspent convictions, under the terms of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. These are commonly referred to as anything recent/serious.

Having a Basic DBS Check as a self-employed individual offers a number of benefits. Not only does it show potential employers and organisations that you are proactive in arranging a screening, it could serve as evidence of your character and history.

Basic Checks may also be relevant for those who are self-employed and looking to work abroad, such as TEFL teachers who are required to provide some form of screening in their application.

How to apply for a Basic DBS Check as an individual?

If you’re self-employed and living in England or Wales you can apply for a Basic DBS Check using our simple online system. If you are living or working in Scotland you will need to apply directly through Disclosure Scotland to get a Basic DBS Check for yourself.

Applying for a Basic DBS Check as an individual couldn’t be easier with or step-by-step online application process.

STEP ONE. Enter your Personal Details including your 5-year address history, personal information and payment details.  

STEP TWO. Getting your ID verified by an independent individual (not a partner or family member). To Find out which forms of documents you can use for ID click here (hyperlink to https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/basic-check-guidance-and-policies)

STEP THREE. Your application will be processed by the DBS.

STEP FOUR. When the DBS have completed processing your check, you will be sent a certificate in the post. You will also be able to view your results online by logging in to the uCheck Platform.

What about working in a regulated activity?

You will need a higher level of check if you’re self-employed and working / applying to work in a regulated activity, such as with vulnerable adults or children.

But Standard and Enhanced DBS Checks cannot be requested by an individual. So, what are the rules surrounding Standard or Enhanced DBS Checks for the self-employed?

If you’re working as a contractor for an employer, then it is their responsibility to apply for the required check on your behalf.

A higher level of DBS Check for the self-employed is also attainable if you work under the umbrella of a registered organisation, because they may be able to request a check on your behalf too. For example, a nanny or childminder agency would be able to apply for a check on behalf of a nanny.

An additional option is to contact your local council for a DBS Check as a self-employed individual because, depending on your role, the council may also be able to apply on your behalf.

DBS Checks for the self-employed – a summary

To recap, individuals are only eligible to request a Basic DBS Check on themselves. Basic Checks have their uses and certificates are returned, on average, in under 48 hours.

If you’re an individual working in a regulated activity, you can still have a Standard or Enhanced DBS Check as a self-employed individual. However, an agency or local council must request the required disclosure on your behalf.

If you’d like any more info on DBS Checks for the self-employed don’t hesitate to give us a call or contact us via our live chat.

Our blogs are advisory in nature and reflect uCheck Limited’s current thinking about best and common practice in the subjects discussed.

The information contained in our blogs have been provided for information purposes only. This information does not constitute legal, professional, or commercial advice. Whilst every care has been taken to ensure that the content is up to date, useful and accurate, uCheck gives no guarantees, undertakings, or warranties in this regard, or, for any loss or damage caused arising directly or indirectly in connection with reliance on the use of such information.

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