Responsible Recruitment - Criminal Records Checks

prev next
Important information regarding criminal records checks:

NEW UPDATE (2014/15)  

Criminal Records Checks 

Quicker, cheaper and simpler processing of criminal records checks! 65 percent of people requiring criminal records checks in football are now using the online application process through Online Disclosures.  

This service provides quicker, cheaper checks which are simple for clubs and organisations to administer. Feedback from users of the service has been extremely positive. Online Disclosure’s online checks cost £10 per person, including VAT. 

The paper-based applications currently cost £15.30 including VAT and from 1st June 2013, will rise to £20 including VAT. This increase in cost is directly linked to processing changes that have had to be implemented, as a result of the Protection of Freedoms Act, 2012.  

Therefore from 1st June, the costs for DBS Enhanced with or without barred list checks are:

You are

Administration fee paper application method

Administration fee online application method

Government charge


A Volunteer




£20 or £10 depending on application method

Not a Volunteer




£64 or £54 depending on application method

Choosing to process your applications via Online Disclosures’s online criminal records checks application service will therefore save £10/check from 1st June 2013!

Click here for an e-guide which provides step-by-step information on how to use the online application process.

If you require any further support or guidance with using the online application process, please contact or call 0845 210 8080 and The FA Criminal Records Body will be happy to assist.

OLD UPDATE (2013/14)

Over the past couple of months, we have periodically sent out updates to all Welfare Officers regarding the pending changes to the Criminal Records Check (CRC), formerly known as CRB, following the implementation of the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012. New guidance has been sent to all Welfare Officers regarding the new Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) process and the implications this will have on applying for DBS checks on individuals at your club. A DBS check is the higher level of check, previously the Enhanced CRB, and is the level of CRC that The FA are required to use for specific roles.

So what’s new?

In simple terms, following the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012, and extensive consultation between the government and the Football Association, there has been a clarification of those roles which are eligible for DBS checks. In addition there is now a definition of what is classed as “Regulated Activity.” roles which require a DBS check. These details can be found by clicking on the ‘Eligibility of Roles’ document below.

The most critical element of these changes is that it is now a pre-entry requirement for a Junior Football Coach or Manager/Assistant to have an “Accepted” DBS PRIOR to being officially involved within the club or organisation. The FA has been informed by the DBS that it will become illegal to work in regulated activity without having a DBS check. There has also been a shift in duty for Clubs to “ensure that persons in regulated activity are not barred.

Should this process not be strictly followed as part of a wider safe recruitment process, the legal responsibility now lays with the Club/Participant and NOT the County FA.

With Charter Standard Health Check season almost upon us could we please request that all clubs complete their own club audit of volunteers to establish who is eligible for a check. Once this is done priority should be given initially to those who have never applied for a disclosure. Following this, we strongly recommend all pre-2010 DBS checks are updated. Beyond this FA Policy will demand renewals are carried out at least every three years.

To make this process easier, all Clubs via their CWO have access to the Online Safeguarding Service (Member Services) and the Online DBS Application Process. All CWOs have previously been sent the link to register for the Online DBS service which is much cheaper and accurate than the previous paper-based system. We now urge all clubs to use the online application service.

Should you have any queries on this please contact Jennie Bennett, County Welfare Officer on 01642 717778 or email

DBS Frequently Asked Questions document along with other useful documents can be found below.