Transferable DBS Checks: Is a DBS check portable between employers?

When you have been issued with a DBS certificate, you might want to consider using it for work with more than one employer or even for a new role in the same company. This is often the case for contractors who are working in multiple establishments at one time. It is therefore crucial to know if your certificate will be accepted by the new employer(s). Below is our complete guide to ‘portable’ DBS checks.

Are DBS checks portable?

Ultimately it is an employer’s decision to accept an old DBS check or to request a new one. This will depend on whether your certificate is the same level of DBS check as your new employer is requesting, how long ago your certificate was issued and whether you are signed up to the DBS Update Service. You can check with your new employer if they will accept the old certificate, but if not, they may ask you to apply for a new DBS check.

DBS Update Service

The Update Service is an online subscription service run and maintained by the Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS). The Update Service automatically keeps your DBS certificate up to date and also allows new employers to check your certificate online, meaning neither you or the employer has to apply for a new DBS certificate. Sometimes this is referred to as having a ‘portable’ or ‘transferrable’ DBS.
Registration for the Update Service costs £13 per year, unless you are a volunteer, then there is no charge. You have 30 days from the certificate issue date to register on the Update Service, or you can register whilst you are still waiting for your current DBS check to be completed. You can register for the update service here.
Please note that, unfortunately, a Basic DBS check cannot be registered with the Update Service.
If you’re an employer requiring DBS checks for your staff, we would be delighted to process your checks for you. Register here, it only takes a few minutes!
If you require any further advice on portable DBS checks please call us on 0151 638 6158 or email us at enquiries@accesspcs.co.uk.