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POLICE CHECKS FOR INDIVIDUALS

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

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Below are the most common questions people ask us about police checks. If you don't find the answer you're seeking in the information below, please feel free to give us a call or send us an email and one of our friendly team will be happy to answer your questions.

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This is information relating to any recorded criminal history a person may have. The information is categorised as either Disclosable or Non-disclosable subject to Spent Convictions/non-disclosure legislation and/or information release policies of the individual police agency holding the criminal history records for that individual.

Criminal history information may include outstanding charges and criminal convictions/findings of guilt recorded against a person that may be disclosed according to the laws of the relevant jurisdiction and, in the absence of any laws governing the release of that information, according to the relevant jurisdiction’s information release policy.

Cloak Investigations Pty Ltd (T/A Employment Screening Australia) is an Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC) accredited agent for providing criminal history information and police check certificates to individual applicants for employment purposes.

ESA, as an accredited agency, is able to request criminal history information via the National Police Checking Service (NPCS) which is the intermediary between accredited agencies and police agencies.

 

Once your application/consent form has been received and checked and your identity has been suitably verified, Employment Screening Australia submits the application to the National Police Checking Service (NPCS) central index for potential matches.

If any of your details match those held on the central index, the application is automatically referred to the relevant police agency. The police agency compares name matches with police history information held in Australian police records.

The information is then released subject to relevant Spent Convictions/Non-disclosure legislation or information release policies. NPCS then provides the result of the police check to Employment Screening Australia and we send it to you in the form of a clearance certificate.

 

Under Queensland Criminal Law (Rehabilitation of Offenders) Act 1986 a conviction automatically becomes ‘spent’ upon completion of the prescribed rehabilitation period.

This period is 10 years for indictable offences, where the offender was an adult at the time of the conviction; and five years for other summary offences where the offender was a juvenile.

Where a person is convicted of a subsequent offence (an offence other than a simple or regulatory offence) during the rehabilitation period, the period runs from the date of the subsequent conviction.

Convictions where the offender is sentenced to more than 30 months imprisonment (whether or not that sentence is suspended) are excluded from the Spent Convictions Scheme.

Once the rehabilitation period has expired, it is lawful for a person to deny (including under oath) that the person has been convicted of the offence, and the conviction must be disregarded for occupational licensing
purposes.

It is unlawful for any person to disclose the conviction unless:

• The convicted person consents;
• The Minister has granted a permit authorising disclosure;
• The disclosure is subject to an exemption.

Exclusions

If a third party agency has either complete or partial exclusion from the Spent Convictions legislation, it will, in addition to Disclosable court outcomes be entitled to see all or some ‘spent convictions’ (ie full or partial record) that form part of a person’s record eg for sexual offences and offences against children etc…

You are asked to certify that the personal information you have provided on the form is correct. Providing false or misleading information is a Commonwealth offence and you may be prosecuted under the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth).

Please note:

The existence of a criminal record does not mean you will automatically be assessed as unsuitable. Your employer cannot discriminate against you based on your criminal record if your offenses bear no relationship with the fundamentals of your job role eg. You cannot be excluded from accountancy work if you have driving offenses.

Your employer must examine each case on its merits. It is in your interests to provide full and frank disclosure.

Signing the form, means you acknowledge you;

  • have read and understood the information provided in the form about how your personal information and any police information, relevant to you, will be handled and disclosed;
  • provide your permission for Employment Screening Australia to request a nationally coordinated criminal history check on your behalf; and
  • provide your permission for Employment Screening Australia to disclose your information to any organisation listed in C1 of this form.

Yes. As an accredited ACIC broker with access to the National Police Checking Service, all our police checks are conducted nationally.

No. AFP (Australian Federal Police) clearances can only be obtained through the Australian Federal Police.

At Employment Screening Australia, we strive for excellence in customer service and efficiency. However, the time taken to receive results once an application has been submitted to the National Police Checking Service is entirely dependent upon the NPCS and police agencies.

In most cases, applications are processed within 24-48 hours (1-2 business days) from receipt of your documents. Some lodgements, such as those in which there is a name match with a person on the NPCS database or where the applicant is found to have a police history, are usually processed within 10-12 business days. Applications may take longer to process for reasons beyond this agency’s control.

You will be advised via email updates in relation to the status of your application.

 

Yes you can apply for a police check if you are under 18 years of age provided you obtain the consent of a parent, guardian or legal representative (as defined by relevant legislation).

Proof of permission must be shown before Employment Screening Australia will submit a police check for a person under 18.

During the online application process, you will be required to upload 5 identity documents:

  • one commencement document to confirm your birth in Australia or arrival in Australia
  • one primary and two secondary documents to show the use of your identity in the community
  • one picture of yourself holding a sheet of paper with your name and the date hand written on it.

PLEASE NOTE: There is no longer a requirement to have your documents certified by a JP.

A commencement document is to confirm your birth in Australia or arrival in Australia. You will be asked to provide one commencement document with your application.

These may include:

  • Full Australian birth certificate (not an extract or birth card)
  • Current Australian passport (not expired)
  • Australian Visa current at time of entry to Australia as resident or tourist
  • ImmiCard issued by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection that enables the cardholder to prove their visa and/or migration status and enroll in services
  • Certificate of identity issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to refugees and non- Australian citizens for entry to Australia
  • Document of identity issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to Australian citizens or persons who possess the nationality of a Commonwealth country, for travel purposes
  • Certificate of evidence of resident status.

If your commencement and primary documents do not include a photograph, you must submit a passport-style photograph certified by a person listed in Schedule 2 of the Statutory Declarations Regulations 1993 (Cth) for example, a Justice of the Peace.

A primary document shows the use of your identity in the community.

You will be required to provide one of the following with your application:

  • Current Australian driver licence, learner permit or provisional licence issued by a state or territory, showing signature and/or photo and the same name as claimed
  • Australian marriage certificate issued by a state or territory (church or celebrant-issued certificates are not accepted)
  • Current passport issued by a country other than Australia with a valid entry stamp or visa

If your commencement and primary documents do not include a photograph, you must submit a passport-style photograph certified by a person listed in Schedule 2 of the Statutory Declarations Regulations 1993 (Cth) for example, a Justice of the Peace.

  • Current proof of age or photo identity card issued by an Australian government agency in your name with photo and signature
  • Current shooter or firearm licence showing signature and photo (not minor or junior permit or licence)
  • For persons aged under 18 with no other Primary Use in Community Documents, a current student identification card with photo or signature.

Secondary documents show the use of your identity in the community, you will be required to provide two of these with your application.

  • Certificate of identity issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
  • Document of identity issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
  • Convention travel document secondary (United Nations) issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
  • Foreign government issued documents (for example driver licence)
  • Medicare card
  • Enrolment with the Australian Electoral Commission
  • Security guard or crowd control photo licence
  • Evidence of right to a government benefit (Centrelink or Veterans Affairs)
  • Consular photo identity card issued by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
  • Photo identity card issued to an officer by a police force
  • Photo identity card issued by the Australian Defence Force
  • Photo identity card issued by the Australian Government or a state or territory government
  • Aviation Security Identification Card
  • Maritime Security Identification card
  • Credit reference check;
  • Australian tertiary student photo identity document
  • Australian secondary student photo identity document
  • Certified academic transcript from an Australian university
  • Trusted referees report
  • Bank card
  • Credit card

You are required to take one picture of yourself holding a sheet of paper with your name, signature and today's date on it and upload this along with your identity documents.

This is required to help us confirm the link between the applicant and the identity they are claiming in the application.

We manually and visually compare your face against a photograph on your identity documents. For more information Click Here

During the process of obtaining a result, every care is taken to ensure police check results are accurate. Employment Screening Australia is subject to strict external auditing and internal quality assurance processes to ensure that results are given accurately.

However, the end result depends heavily on the accurate identification of the applicant (including aliases) and the accuracy and comprehensiveness of police records.

A police record may not contain all police history information due to issues with name matching and laws that prevent disclosure of certain police history information.

Police Check results are time limited and should not be relied upon for an unreasonable amount of time. To the extent permitted by law, all information provided in police check results is made available for use
on the following conditions:

  • Employment Screening Australia makes no representation or warranty of any kind without limitation in respect to accuracy
  • The information in a police check report should form only one part of any process for determining a person’s suitability for any entitlement, profession, undertaking, appointment or employment
  • To the extent permitted by law, Employment Screening Australia accepts no responsibility or liability for any error or omission in the information.

 

No. ACIC advises that it can only discuss the progress of your application with Authorised Personnel of Employment Screening Australia. All questions should be directed to Employment Screening Australia.

In accordance with Employment Screening Australia’s Information Security Policy, all personal information including Application/Consent forms, copies of identity documents, police check results, dispute forms and other correspondence cannot be accessed by unauthorised personnel and is stored in a secure location. Police check results are retained for a period of no more than 12 months, after which time they are destroyed in accordance with our Destruction of Expired Documents policy.

If you disagree with your police check results, you have the right to formally dispute the accuracy of the check outcome in whole, or part. If you choose to dispute the police check result, you must first contact Employment Screening Australia and request an NPCS Dispute Form.

You must include as much additional information as possible on the form including an outline of the particulars that are under dispute. For example, attach any evidence that you have to prove that the information is not correct eg. An airline ticket to prove that you were in a different location at the time the offense was committed.

Once the dispute form is received, Employment Screening Australia will forward a copy of the form to ACIC.

ACIC will then ask the police agency that holds the disputed police history information to investigate the dispute. If, on completion of their investigations the police agency believes the result was released correctly, they will advise ACIC of this outcome and ACIC will advise Employment Screening Australia.

If the police agency believes an incorrect result was provided, the police agency will provide ACIC with the updated result.