Most Common DBS Myths

Dealing with DBS Myths

You’ve probably heard lots of “facts” about DBS checks. We’ve certainly heard our fair share of DBS myths and all these stories do is cause confusion for people who are applying for checks. One of the reasons that there are so many issues with DBS checking is that the system keeps changing names. Ignore the myths and you’ll soon find out that arranging a DBS check doesn’t have to be difficult.

Myth 1 – You pass or fail a DBS check

This is one of the most common myths around and is completely incorrect. A DBS certificate isn’t like a driving test or an exam which you pass or fail. It’s simply a statement of your police record. Employers look at the information presented on the certificate then decide whether they want to employ you. Each employer will have their own rules about what offences are acceptable and which ones aren’t.

Myth 2 – Employers only take people with clean DBS certificates

This is related to the previous myth about DBS certificates showing a pass or fail. Although it’s probably true that you’ll struggle to get a job with a lengthy criminal past, minor convictions won’t go against you in most cases. If your convictions were minor and a long time in the past, they might not even show up on a DBS certificate. There are around 11 million people in the UK with a criminal record. Most of them have no problem getting and keeping a job.

Myth 3 – Anyone can ask for a DBS check

There is a grain of truth in this. Anyone over the 18 is eligible for a DBS check, but only if their job role requires it. Employers can’t make up their own minds about who they want to DBS check. Employees can’t make the decision either. The government has rules about which sort of work needs DBS checks. This is called “regulated activity”. If the job you’re doing doesn’t come under regulated activity, you won’t need a DBS check and can’t ask for one to be done.

Myth 4 – You can’t challenge information on a DBS check

Most DBS certificates are mistake-free. Mistakes can happen though. If you get a certificate with a name spelled wrongly, or if there are crimes on the form you don’t recognise, you have the right to challenge them. A quick phone call to the DBS will usually resolve simple typos. Proving you’re not the one responsible for a crime is trickier. You may have to go to your local police station and give your fingerprints to compare with the prints held on the police computer.

Myth 5 – Getting a DBS check is a nightmare

Applying for your DBS check isn’t always a lengthy process. Read the guidance notes and make sure you complete the form correctly. Gather together the identity and address documents to show to your employer. Double check the form for mistakes and submit it with the right fee. If you’d prefer to get help with your DBS application, we can help you apply for your DBS check. We are experts in this field and will smooth the process for you.