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Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) DBS


The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks the criminal records background of people who wish to work with children and vulnerable groups.

Please note: This information is for new students. If you are a student returning to a course or with a deferred/resit placement, please contact the Programme Administration (PAD) team.

Getting your DBS check

There are four elements to getting your DBS check:

1. As part of the DBS application process, we must confirm your Nationality and your Right to Work in the UK.  We are unable to process your DBS application until you have provided your Right to Work ID evidence.

Please see our 'Providing Evidence of Right to Work for DBS' for full details on what ID documents you need to provide.

2. Complete our online application form. You need to pay the DBS fee at this stage unless you are coming to do certain specific professional Health courses (see ‘Is there a cost for this?’ below)

3. Have your identity verified by providing certain ID documents.

4. Receive your DBS certificate.

If you wish to join the DBS Update Service as well, you can do so after either point 3. or 4: please see below and the 'Update Service' link at the bottom of this page for further information.

You will be sent instructions in an email on completing our online DBS application. Please bear in mind the following: -

  • You must apply for your DBS check via the University of Cumbria, not another organisation.
  • Basic level DBS checks (which you can now obtain yourself as an individual) will not be acceptable.
  • Checks obtained via Disclosure Scotland or Access Northern Ireland will not be acceptable, unless we have specifically asked you to obtain this type of check: this applies only to Return to Practice applicants doing their clinical experience in Scotland or Northern Ireland.

Providing ID Evidence of Right to Work for DBS

To meet our UK Visa and Immigration obligations, we need to ensure that students have the Right to Study and Right to Work in the UK and are required to obtain evidence of this prior to completing the DBS check. 

Please Note: That we must see your original ID Documents to complete the Right to Work check. If you are an EU citizen with settled status in the UK, we will need to access your Right to Work Share Code. 

We are unable to process your DBS until you have provided your Right to Work ID evidence. If you are unable to supply the required documents, please contact the DBS team at and the team can discuss what documents you have.


Documentary evidence in person (recommended):

You can take your original document(s) to your nearest University of Cumbria campus. Please go to the Admissions office at our Lancaster and Carlisle campuses, and main reception at our London campus. We are open Monday - Friday, 9am - 5pm. For further information about how to find us please email

Documentary evidence by post:

You can post your document(s) to us at DBS Admissions, Gateway Building, University of Cumbria, Bowerham Road, Lancaster, LA1 3JD.

We strongly recommend that you send your document using recorded or special delivery and we will return it to you by recorded delivery. 

If you choose to post your document we will also arrange a video call with you so that we can verify your identity. 

If you are unable to bring your document in person and do not wish to post your document:

Please contact to discuss an alternative method to provide this evidence. 

Share Code (EU/EEA nationals):

We will ask you to send us your right to work share code. Upon receipt of your share code we will arrange a video call with you so that we can verify your identity.

The ID Evidence you need to provide will be different depending on your nationality. Please read the options below to see what ID Evidence you are required to provide:


If you are a British Citizen born within or outside the UK:

If you are an Irish citizen:

If you are a British National born outside the UK whose Nationality is one of the below:

If you are an EU, EEA or Non-EEA National, including Swiss Nationals. (Other than British and Irish Citizens):

Having your identity verified

There are different options open to you according to where you live:

  • Mainland UK and Northern Ireland: applicants will be asked to go to your nearest participating Post Office. Please be aware that not all Post Office branches offer the service required: for further information please see the guidance in Providing ID Documents. You should take care when searching the Post Office's Branch Finder for one that offers the service required, as there are three similar options. The only compatible one is called 'CRB & ID Verification Service': please see Providing ID Documents for more information.

You must check the Post Office's Branch Finder before you travel, as advised above.  There may be changes to some branches in terms of opening hours or services offered.

  • Isle of Man; Channel Islands; Isles of Scilly and all overseas countries, including Republic of Ireland: applicants will be asked to go to an appropriate professional local to you. Please see Providing ID Documents for more information.

You can view the list of acceptable ID documents here.

We encourage you to register with the DBS update service

  • You can join the Update Service (if you wish) a day or so after you have completed the application form and had your identity documents verified.

Make sure you receive your certificate

  • Finally - you need to be in receipt of your DBS certificate: please look out for this in the post. It will be posted to you by the DBS; it does not come via or from the University. Please keep your DBS certificate safe! You will be asked to provide it when on placement. 
  • You can also join the Update Service now, on receipt of your certificate, within a limited time.


What you need to know

Do I need to do a DBS check?

Is there a cost for this?

I have (or think I may have) a criminal record: what do I do?

Is there a time frame to do the DBS application?

What if I have made an error or omission in my personal information once the DBS application has been submitted?

What happens after I've submitted the application?

I’m due to move house or change my name: can I change these details with the DBS once my application is in progress?

I am a non-UK applicant, or a UK applicant living or recently living abroad

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