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Right to Work Checks and DBS

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Confused about the amount of paperwork you have to complete when starting a new job? It seems that every year another layer of forms is added to the pile, making applying for a job a full-time job in itself. Two of the most common checks are right to work checks and DBS checks. Although there is some crossover between the two things, there are important differences too. If you’re being asked for one or both of these checks, here’s what you need to know.


Right to Work Checks

A right to work check is all about making sure that people are employed legally. If employers are caught with people who are either in the UK illegally, or who aren’t allowed to work on their particular visa, there are huge fines. So, employers have to check to make sure you are who you say you are. The most common way of doing this is by asking workers to bring their passports with them to interview. Your passport proves not only your identity, but your nationality. If you have a UK passport, then your right to work in the UK is clear. EU passport holders still have that right too, and may continue to do so, depending on Brexit. If someone comes from outside the EU, then the employer might have to do more investigation into the visa they hold. These checks should be carried out for every job based in the UK.


DBS Checks

A DBS check is something different, but is still about assessing suitability for work. DBS stands for Disclosure and Barring Service, and looks into someone’s criminal record. Not every job needs a DBS check. Furthermore, different levels of check apply to different types of job. Someone’s nationality isn’t checked as part of this process, although you might be asked to show your passport to prove your identity. Job adverts usually state whether a DBS check will be carried out. As a Right to Work check is done as standard it’s often not stated on an advert, it’s just assumed.

Most of the jobs which need a DBS check involve some degree of responsibility. This could be responsibility in terms of handling large sums of money, or in terms of providing care to the elderly, disabled or children. There’s lots of information online about the background to DBS checks, and how the application process works.


DBS Checks for Overseas Applicants

The most tricky scenario is for someone who has to prove both their nationality, and get a DBS check. With the correct stamps in your passport and visa checks, the first part should be easy. DBS checks are trickier for people who have only recently come to the UK though. The DBS can’t check the records of foreign police forces, so will ask for an equivalent check from your home country instead. The process for doing this will depend on the country involved. It could also take quite some time, so start looking at the process before sending off application forms.