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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. Confirm your Nationality and Right to Work in the UK.

2. Complete our online DBS application form.

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

4. Receive your DBS certificate.

Criminal Record Self-disclosure

If you have, or think you may have, a criminal record then you need to submit a criminal record self-disclosure form to the DBS Team now (if you have not sent it in already).  If you have questions or concerns about what you may need to disclose; are unsure or need help, please contact the DBS Team at; 01228 242928/242914.

For more information on this and the self-disclosure form itself, please refer to Self-Disclosure of Criminal Record 

You also need to do your online DBS application and have your ID verified as soon as possible to allow maximum time for our clearance procedure.  You cannot be DBS-cleared and complete this admissions check requirement until we have seen your DBS certificate at the end of the process.  Therefore, it is important that you submit your online DBS application as early as possible. 

Providing ID Evidence of Right to Work for DBS

As part of the DBS application process, and to meet our UK Visa and Immigration obligations, we need to ensure that all students have the Right to Work in the UK and we must ask for evidence of this right.  We are unable to process your DBS application until you have provided your Right to Work evidence. 

If you are unable to supply the required documents, please contact the DBS team at

The ID Evidence you need to provide will be different depending on your nationality. Please see the drop-downs below:

If you are a British Citizen:

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):

How to provide your Right to Work Evidence

Digital Right to Work ID Check (Must have a current UK Address):

Documentary evidence in person:

Documentary evidence by post:

Right to Work Share Code (EU/EEA nationals):

Having your identity verified

If you hold an in-date and valid UK/Irish Passport in your full current legal name, and have a current UK address, you should be eligible to complete a Digital ID Check as part of the DBS application via the University of Cumbria. 

We strongly recommend that students complete a Digital ID Check, where possible, as the Digital ID checking service allows you to complete your ID check online instead of having to do an in-person ID check.  

If you do not hold a current and valid photo identity document, then you will not be eligible to complete a Digital ID check and will need to complete your DBS ID check differently according to where you live.

Please see Providing ID Documents for more information. 

Make sure you receive your certificate

The last step is for you to receive your DBS Certificate.  Please look out for this arriving in the post.  The DBS Certificate is posted to you by the DBS, it does not come via or from the University of Cumbria, and it will be sent to the address listed on your DBS application.  

Once you have received your DBS certificate, please keep your DBS certificate safe! You will be asked to provide it when on placement.  

How To Register with the DBS update service

If you wish you can also join the DBS Update Service now, on receipt of your DBS certificate.  You have 30 calendar days to register with the DBS Update Service, with the issue date of the DBS Certificate being the 1st calendar day. 

For further advice and guidance please see our Update Service webpage.

Overseas Police Checks

As a DBS check can only cover time spent in the UK if you have lived, or are currently living, outside the UK you will need to obtain an overseas police check of some kind.  This is separate to applying for your DBS check.  

Please refer to Overseas Criminal Records Checks for further information. 

What you need to know

Do I need to do a DBS check?

Is there a cost for this?

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?

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