In the UK, a Basic Disclosure is what you can apply for on your own – UK employers are actually able to get a more thorough background check if you’re applying for a job with children but your Chinese employer won’t have access to that, so the Basic Disclosure it is.
This basic criminal background check costs £23 and is available to anyone from England and Wales.
To apply, you need to be over the age of 16, which should be just fine given one of the eligibility requirements for teaching in China is that you’d be between the ages of 18 and 55 (women) or 60 (men).
Remember that your criminal background check must be:
- No more than 6 months old
- Be issued by the relevant authority
- Be from ANY country you’ve lived in for 6 months or more, in the last 5 years. So yes, even if you’re not a citizen of the UK but have lived there for a considerable amount of time in the last few years, you can and should apply for a Basic Disclosure in the UK
Here’s what you need to apply:
- Address details of EVERY place you have lived, in England or Wales, over the last 5 years
- Details of your national insurance number
- Driving license
- Payment fee (pay with credit card or through Apple/Google Pay)
There are three ways to get your criminal background check in the UK:
- you can apply yourself at any police station,
- online, directly with the relevant authorities OR
- you can use the services of one of the many accredited responsible organizations.
Option 1 – Apply at any police station
If you can’t or don’t want to apply online, you can simply visit your nearest police station and apply in person – don’t forget to bring all your documents.
Option 2 – Apply online through the DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service)
You can apply online here but do note that if the site is unable to verify your identity, you will have 10 days to visit a Post Office to complete this last step or your application will be scrapped and you’ll have to start over. Make sure the Post Office you’ve chosen offers the DBS Identity Validation Service before you go and do keep in mind that your application will not start until this step is completed.
Option 3 – Apply through a responsible organization
Several accredited and recognized agencies (like CRB Direct) can act on your behalf and secure a criminal background check. Why would anyone want to employ their services? Because the process is slightly faster, easier and more streamlined – the agent acts as your third-party verification so, if verifying your identity online has not worked (as stated above) this is a great option if you don’t want to waste time with a Post Office visit.
Moreover, a great bonus of this kind of service is that you can apply from abroad – if the UK is one of your countries you’ve lived in during the last 5 years, but you no longer reside there, it’s an efficient way to secure your Basic Disclosure.
The cost of this service varies between £65 and £75.