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  • When does a Police Check Expire in Victoria (VIC)?

    The national police check is one of the most important documents in Australia. It reveals many useful legal details about a candidate to a decision maker or authority. Most employers even request a police background check result before employing the shortlisted candidates.

    However, a police check result is not a one-time legal assessment document. The details and records of a criminal history check continue to change depending on the candidate's interaction with the Australian judicial system.

    When does a police check expire in Victoria?

    A national police check in Victoria is a point-in-time check and has no set expiry date. Employers and decision makers in Victoria decide on expiry dates for criminal history checks based on their internal risk mitigation policies. Generally, most employers in Victoria do not accept a police check result that is older than three (3) months.

    A big reason for this is that a person could get a conviction within that period. When applying for any position or role in Victoria, ensuring that your criminal background check records are not older than three months old serves as a risk mitigation strategy for workplaces and the like.

    So does a Police Check expire?

    No, the police check never expires regardless of when you obtained it. The Police Check is a point-in-time check, and it remains valid from the point of issue to any other point.

    However, most companies avoid older criminal record check records. They require every candidate to submit a more recent copy of their checks.

    What is a Criminal History Check certificate?

    The criminal history check certificate contains a legally issued record of a person's criminal records. It’s release and disclosure are authorised by necessary State and Territory laws.

    It contains the information of;

    • Pending charges,
    • Convictions,
    • Imprisonment terms,
    • Offences against corporate bodies

    What happens when my criminal record check is too old?

    Some organisations or agencies will reject your national police check if it falls outside the age range they need. Most organisations usually prefer checks not older than three months old. Anything outside this is traditionally considered as a more senior record.

    The best thing to do when your criminal history check gets old is to renew your certificate. There are a few national and online agencies that offer a complete, easy and fast process to obtain your criminal history check certificate online.

    The process can be completed within 15 minutes or so and can be completed in 10 simple steps;

    1. Select the "Start a new Police Check"/Renew a Police Check button on the Australian National Character Check online application form.
    2. Complete the first page of the application form provided with accurate details.
    3. Cross-check previous data you entered.
    4. Select and enter the purpose of the Police Check application; volunteer, employment, and so on.
    5. Complete payments via any online options; PayPal, Debit/Credit card, and co.
    6. Provide the requested Identification documents by;
    • Taking photos,
    • Scanning and uploading,
    • Mailing copies (Post/Police office).
    1. Submit all IDs online.
    2. Sign the informed consent form online before submitting the application.
    3. Use the “Track a Check” option on the website to track the status of the application. The certificates are also downloadable when they are available.
    4. Get an electronic copy of the police check result. It will be sent to the Email address on your application.

    You can also explore other physical or in-person means of renewal by;

    Applying through the Police Force in Victoria

    Applications for a police check in Victoria can be completed at your local Victorian Police office.

    Applicants must present their verification IDs that corroborate any of the information they submit in the forms.

    Applying through your Local Post office in Victoria

    The post office forwards all criminal history check applications from the candidate to the National Check agency. Applicants must submit all requested information together with the specified ID verification.

    What document do you need for a police check renewal?

    Applicants still have to provide ID documents when they renew their criminal background check certificate. However, any change in your records/information within that period must be supported by proof or the updated document. A new application form will need to be completed if you wish to renew your check.

    Can an employer refuse a criminal record check?

    Employers can interpret a candidate’s police record check based on their internal risk mitigation policies. And if such conviction is contradictory to the role, such an employer can refuse the check given the conviction will affect the inherent requirements of a job role.

    However, employers must abide by privacy principles for criminal records and anti discriminatory principles when interpreting a national police check.

    Why should you renew a criminal history check?

    Updated police checks reveal more details about your criminal history since the last time you applied. For example, if the status of a conviction or record changes, it will only be corrected in the updated results.

    • Most organisations/agencies want updated records.

    With an updated nationally coordinated criminal history check certificate, an employer can properly assess your suitability for a role.

    • Spent convictions are removed

    The Spent Convictions Scheme in Australia removes all eligible offences from the individual's conviction records. However, this will only reflect in the updated criminal records since the removal.

    • It is part of a company’s risk mitigations strategy

    Legislation underpinning some sensitive roles (like aged care police checks) requires that organisations that offer services in the "sensitive" sectors should obtain updated criminal history checks within certain intervals.

    It also reiterates that employers have a duty to protect the welfare and health of those they provide services to.

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