How to get a DBS check
In most cases, we will be in touch with you to let you know when to start the DBS check process before you start; the University’s DBS team is here to help you go through the DBS check process.
DBS check expiry
Your DBS check will be valid for University use for four years. Your DBS certificate displays the date it was printed, but it doesn’t have a set expiry date because a conviction could be recorded at any time after it's been issued.
Keeping your DBS status up-to-date
It might be a good idea to join the DBS update service, which lets you keep your DBS certificate up-to-date as you continue your professional career, so you won’t have to pay for additional checks.
Courses that require the DBS update service
If you are studying social work or occupational therapy, signing up to the update service is a requirement of your course. To do this, register for the update service within 30 days of your certificate being issued. Our DBS team will be able to help you go through the process. You will need to renew your subscription each year for the duration of your course. If you do not register for the Update Service within 30 days, or your registration lapses, and you later attend a placement where this is a requirement, you will have to pay for a new DBS check, which will enable you to sign up to the Update service.
Do you need a new DBS check?
The DBS update service lets other organisations check the DBS certificate you currently hold and whether it’s still valid. If you’ve joined the update service, our DBS team can check whether you can use your current certificate using our status check form, or whether you need a new one, as long as your certificate was issued on or after 17 June 2013.
If you’ve lost your certificate
Try not to! It's your responsibility to look after your original certificate. You can call the DBS centre on 0300 020 0190 to reissue a certificate, but you need to do this within 93 days of your certificate being issued. If your certificate can’t be reissued, you may need to complete and pay for a new check.
DBS check for a job or work experience
The University can only help with DBS checks when it’s related to your course, so if you need one for a new job or work experience, please contact your new employer to organise the check.
The DBS was established under the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 and merges the functions previously carried out by the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA). The University of Essex processes criminal record applications for students and members of staff through a company called Atlantic Data Ltd. Both staff and students complete the DBS check application online using the Disclosures Manager system. To find out more please read the University’s policy and procedure on DBS checks (.pdf)
You may have questions about the DBS check, perhaps involving some sensitivity. Our helpful, friendly DBS team is on-hand to provide support and guidance, so please get in touch if you need some help.