How much is a CRB check?

How much is a CRB check if I'm on JSA?

A DBS check, formerly known as a CRB check, is a criminal records check. There are lots of different types of checks that can be conducted – the basic CRB/DBS check costs £23, the enhanced check costs £40 and the enhanced with barred list check is also £40. Although sometimes you’re able to get them for free. Read on to learn more.

What is a CRB/DBS check?

We’ve already answered How much is a CRB check? (scroll up if you missed it) but you probably should know more about what the thing actually is.

CRB checks are now known as DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) checks. First thing you need to know? You can’t do a DBS check on yourself. They’re generally done by employers or organisations who are recruiting for specific roles that need employees to have a criminal record check. For example, DBS checks are usually used in any profession where you would be working with children or vulnerable adults. Once you complete the check you’ll be given a DBS certificate to prove it. If you’re applying for a more involved role, then you might have to go through a barred list check.

How to get a free CRB check/DBS check

A free CRB check, or DBS check, is only available in certain circumstances. The main criteria is that you have to be working. If you’re unemployed and on benefits like JSA or universal credit, you’ll still need to know how much a DBS check costs and pay it out of pocket. This’ll depend on whether you want to apply for a basic DBS check or enhanced DBS checks. Employers are not required to cover the cost, but they’re usually willing to. Don’t just assume though, make sure you check their policy to find out. It’s also worth mentioning that your company might use an umbrella body which provides a check service that help with DBS applications.

DBS checks are free for volunteers

How much is a CRB check? Free! (if you’re a volunteer), although you still have to fill in the application form. 

The DBS class a volunteer as “a person engaged in an activity which involves spending time unpaid (except for travel and other approved out-of-pocket expenses), doing something which aims to benefit some third party other than, or in addition to, a close relative.” If that sounds like something you’d be interested in then check out The Mix’s whole selection of volunteering resources here.

Free CRB checks are being offered to healthcare & social care workers

The only other way to get a free DBS check is if you’re applying for a job as a healthcare or social care worker. This is a temporary measure to speed up the checking process for those roles in response to the pandemic.

For further information on DBS checks, you can contact the Disclosure and Barring Service helpline on 0870 909 0811. Check out the rest of The Mix’s work and study resources here.

Answered by Citizens Advice Bureau on 20-May-2013

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