Guide to DBS Checks for Self-employed Workers
People who are self-employed usually act as their own boss. Therefore, it can be difficult to decide which DBS check is most suitable for the job in question as there are no managers to refer to and no company policies in place.
For those reasons, we’ve put together this article which will explain what the most suitable DBS check is likely to be for you and how to apply for it.
Which DBS check is the most suitable for you and your role?
People who are self-employed cannot apply for their own Standard or Enhanced DBS Check. The reason for this is that they can’t make the suitability assessment for themselves or verify the details objectively. So, as an individual, self employed people can only obtain a basic check, unless they go through a registered third party.
A basic DBS check is the lowest level of DBS check, but still shows up any unspent convictions that the individual may have on their record. An unspent conviction is one that has not been classified as “spent” under the terms set out by law. The employer is allowed to question the convictions and if they are counted as ‘spent’ then the information is limited to specific positions.
An individual who is self-employed, but requires a Standard or Enhanced DBS Check can request that the DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) or Disclosure Scotland (if the individual works and/or lives in Scotland) contract the individual’s services to apply for the check. If a basic DBS check only is necessary, then they can simply be issued by the organisation.
The individual, if engaging in a regulated activity, is most likely to be eligible for a Standard or Enhanced DBS Check.
It is important to realise that as an individual you are unable to request a higher level of DBS Check than a basic one, and only companies or organisations can do so. However, an individual can request an appropriate regulatory organisation to apply on the applicant’s behalf. This will be the case if the work includes partaking in a regulated activity.
The self-employed person or sole trader can request that the company or prospective employer submit the disclosure application on their behalf. So, if an applicant was to work as a contractor in a school, they could ask that same school to submit the DBS check for them.
In some cases, self-employed people may be able to request that their local council help them to apply for one of the higher level DBS checks.
In other cases, the basic DBS certificate alone could help an organisation decide whether they can allow you to work with them under their licence.
DBS Checks for self-employed people – Conclusion
To sum up, it is quite difficult to wrap your head around DBS Checks for those who are self-employed. There are questions around the level of check required, based on the type of work the person is doing.
Then, the level of DBS check will determine whether they can apply directly or whether they will need to go through a third-party to verify and submit the application.
Some essentials to remember are:
For basic checks: the individual needs to see whether it is through the DBS or Disclosure Scotland, but they are able to apply directly as an individual. They can apply directly for a basic DBS check online.
For Standard or Enhanced Checks: any regulatory organisation who regulates their work would need to apply on their behalf.
If in doubt, the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) can confirm which check is suitable for their type of work.
To find out more about DBS checks and ask any questions you may have, get in touch with one of our experts today.