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DBS Frequently Asked Questions

General Queries
How to complete the DBS Application
DBS Certificate Queries
Criminal Convictions
Overseas Police Checks

 What is a DBS Check?

A DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check has replaced what was previously called a CRB check. It is a record of an individual’s convictions, cautions, reprimands and warnings and can also include intelligence held by the UK police that relates to that individual and their suitability for a position working with children and/or vulnerable adults.

Please note that an Enhanced DBS Check can include information on both spent and unspent convictions. Certain minor and old offences will be filtered from DBS certificates, please see the below for more information:

Do I have to pay for my DBS Check?


If you are an applicant applying for one of the following courses, you will need to pay for your DBS Check: MBChB, PGCE, PGDE, Clinical Applications to Psychology, Person-centred Counselling and Psychotherapy and Social Work.

An Enhanced DBS Check currently costs £47.20 (the enhanced DBS Check is £40 and the remaining cost is for the online application fee and VAT). Payment is made directly to the external organisation through whom we complete the DBS Checks.

Payment is only required once you have submitted your online DBS application and a member of the disclosures team has then completed the verification stage of your application.

There may be additional costs required for students who need a non-UK check.

MBChB: Students are required to be re-checked after two years on the course. We therefore recommend that MBChB students register with the Update Service, which currently costs £13 per year. Students who have not registered their Warwick DBS Check with the Update Service will be required to pay for a whole new DBS Check before entering the third year of the course.

Current Students

If you are a current student who requires a DBS Check for research/ placements, you will need to check with your department whether they will cover the cost of the DBS Check.

I already have a DBS Check. Do I need to complete another one?

If you already have a DBS disclosure obtained through the University of Warwick please email disclosures at warwick dot ac dot uk (with the date of the disclosure and the 'position applied for' on the certificate) and we will advise you if you can use your existing disclosure.

We will not be able to accept your existing DBS Check is any of the following apply:

  • If your DBS check was issued by an external organisation i.e. not a department at the University of Warwick. We cannot accept DBS certificates from external organisations even if the DBS Check has been registered with the Update Service
  • If your DBS check will be over 2 years old when your placement finishes and you have not signed up/ renewed your Update Service subscription
  • If your DBS check was at a different level or with a different workforce to your new role e.g. you previously had a check for working with children, but will now be working with both children and vulnerable adults
  • If your DBS check was for a volunteer position and you now require a check for a non-voluntary position

How many documents will I need to provide with my application form?

You need to provide at least 3 original ID documents. Please visit the following webpage for further information and to download the list of ID documents that can be used: Identification documents 

I have completed my online DBS application. The system is telling me that I now need to book an appointment with a verifier. How do I do this?

If you have provided your ID documents already (for example, at your interview), then you do not need to do anything further at this point. We will automatically verify your DBS application using the ID documents that you have provided and will email you to let you know once this is complete. If you have not supplied any ID documents, or we require further documents from you to complete the verification process, we will contact you to request that these are provided.

Please allow at least a week for us to verify your documents. If your application has been at the verification stage for over a week, and you have not received any email from us regarding your application, please feel free to contact us at this point to check the status of your application.

If payment for your DBS Check is required, this will only be requested once the verification process has been completed, and will be made online directly to GBG Online Disclosures.

I know that I hold a criminal record; what should I do?

If you know that you have a criminal record you will need to declare this when you complete your DBS application.

Please note that from 29 May 2013 the DBS will remove certain specified old and minor offences from criminal record certificates. For further information please visit:

The University of Warwick takes any criminal record seriously and will consider each case individually. For the majority of courses, if a record appears on your disclosure, you will be required to go through a Fitness to Practice committee who will assess the situation and decide whether you can be deemed fit to practice, and whether you will therefore be allowed to enrol onto the course. If this is the case you will be contacted in due course.

My conviction is spent, do I still need to declare this?

You may need to declare a conviction or caution to us, even if it is spent. A Standard or Enhanced DBS Check will include spent and unspent convictions, cautions, reprimands and warnings. However, some spent convictions will be filtered by the DBS from appearing on a DBS certificate and therefore do not need to be declared to us. Please see the below links for further information:

I am currently living in student accommodation. What address should I list as my current address?

You can list either your home address or your term-time address (provided that your home address is not overseas). Whichever address you list will be where the DBS will send your disclosure certificate to. You will also need to provide at least one identification document the confirms the address that you list as your current address on the form. If you do not list your term-time address as your current address, it must be included in your previous address history (if you are still living in your term-time address, the end date for this address should be the current month and year).

For information on completing your address history please refer to the application form guidance issued by the DBS, which can be found on the following website:

I have completed my DBS Check, but I never received my certificate. What should I do?

You can use the DBS tracking service to see what stage your application is at: If your application has been in Stage 4 for more than 60 days, please get in touch with us and we will call the DBS on 0300 0200 190 and submit an escalation request.

Once the DBS have completed your check, they will automatically post your DBS certificate to whatever address you listed on your application as your current address. If your certificate has been issued and your have not received it within 14 days, please see the below link for instructions on requesting a re-print of your certificate:

I have received my DBS certificate. Do I need to send this to you?

Once your DBS Check is complete, the DBS will automatically post the DBS certificate to whatever you listed as your current address on your DBS application. We will separately receive confirmation from the DBS that your DBS Check is complete and therefore do not normally require you to send us your certificate. If there are any disclosures on your certificate, then we may contact you as we will usually need to see your original DBS certificate in these circumstances.

Can I challenge the information on my disclosure if it is incorrect?

Yes. For further information on raising a dispute please visit the following website:

Please also notify us if you have raised a dispute by e-mailing disclosures at warwick dot ac dot uk.

I am transgender - how should I complete the application form?

The DBS has a confidential checking process for transgender applicants who do not wish to reveal details of their previous identity to the person who asked them to complete an application form for a DBS check.

For further information please contact the DBS by:

There is an answerphone service available for this number where you can leave your name and contact number and a member of the sensitive applications team will call you back. You should contact the DBS before submitting your application to us.

Please note: this number is for sensitive application enquiries only, please call the contact centre on 03000 200 190 for all other enquiries.

How do I complete a Teacher Services Restrictions Lists Check?

A Teacher Services Restrictions Lists Check is a requirement for PGCE and PGDE applicants. For further information please see the below link:

I currently live overseas - can I apply for the DBS check?

If you have sufficient identification documents from the list of acceptable identification documents then you can apply for the DBS check whilst living overseas. To ensure that you receive your DBS disclosure certificate you will need to use our address as a 'care of' address, as the DBS do not post certificates to overseas addresses. Please enter the following as your current address in Section B of the form:

'Care of Postgraduate Admissions, University of Warwick, Coventry, West Midlands, CV4 8UW'

You should enter the date that you complete the form as the 'from date' of this address. You should then enter your current overseas address in the 'other addresses' section of the form, with the date that you complete the form as the 'end date' of this address.

When the DBS complete your DBS application they will send the certificate to us, and we will either forward this on to you, or hold it for you to collect when you arrive in the UK.

I have lived abroad in the last five years. Do I need to include these address details?

Yes, you should include details of any addresses that you have lived at within the last five years. If you have lived in a country for a period of six months or more within the last five years, then you will also be required to obtain a 'Certificate of Good Conduct' or similar criminal records check from those countries. For information on how to complete your address history if you have lived abroad, or been travelling abroad, please refer to the application form guidance issued by the DBS, which can be found on the following website:

Do I need to obtain an overseas check and how do I obtain this?

Please visit the following webpage for further information: Non UK Checks

Question still not answered?

If the above information has not answered your question, please feel free to email us at disclosures at warwick dot ac dot uk or call us at +44 (0)2476 573867