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Where can I get a police check done?

The information on this webpage is to be read in conjunction with this disclaimer:
Australian National Character Check (ANCC) makes every effort to provide updated and accurate information to its customers. However due to the continuously changing nature of legislations for the Commonwealth and various States and Territories, it is inevitable that some information may not be up to date. The information on the website is general information only. The contents on the website do not constitute legal or professional advice and should not be relied upon as a substitute for legal or professional advice. While we endeavour to keep the information up to date and correct, we make no representations or warranties of any kind, express or implied, about the completeness, suitability, accuracy or availability with respect to the information.

In Australia, whether you are an expert or a Student, a Driver, a business owner or an operator, there is always a high chance that you will need a police check at one point. Almost every business and legal dealing in Australia involves a police check, which makes the application process a crucial question in Australia.

Before Starting your application process, you must know;

  • The purpose of the police check you seek, and
  • The method or medium that your requester specifies.
  • However, if you know all these, and you have the liberty of choice, choose the easiest and most convenient application method.

There are three common and standard methods of applying for the police check in Australia. The checks issued by these service providers are not different except in the seal or stamp of issuance that distinguishes between all mediums.

Option 1 - Online application

Candidates can apply for a police check using the popular online portals of accredited service providers like Australian National Character Check (ANCC). Applying online is generally convenient and time efficient, as candidates can get their police check certificate within 24 to 48 hours of applying unless their check is referred for manual processing in which case it will take longer.

The online application can be completed using an internet-enabled device, including; P.C., Tablet or Mobile device. It means even a tight schedule cannot prevent the candidate from getting their police check certificate as long as they can access the online portal.

It also requires little time to Start and Complete a police check application done online; most candidates complete the police check application as quickly as within 15 minutes of application.

Pros of applying online

  • ✔ It is fast and convenient, including the payment options.
  • ✔ You can submit soft copies for your I.D. verification through scanned I.D.s or JPEGs,
  • ✔ The applicant gets their certificate in as little as within 24 to 48 hours of application unless if the check is referred for manual processing in which case you will be informed by email,
  • ✔ The applicant’s data are transferred using a secure network,
  • ✔ It is easier for employers and other organisations to streamline the application process,
  • ✔ You do not need any physical presence or paper-based application. Apply from anywhere in Australia,
  • ✔ You will get the soft copy of your certificate and can access them easily that way,
  • ✔ There are numerous payment options to complete the application.

Cons of online application

  • You will be unable to continue your application in the case of network downtime from your end,
  • It may not be suitable for persons who do not know how to use a computer, mobile phone or tablet.

Option 2 - Application through a local police force

The State and Territory police forces process all police check applications they receive through the local Police website. If you are applying through the police, you may need to get ready for a paper-based application and a visit to the police station to get identification documents certified or verified. However, some companies and agencies may request that you get the police check certificate from the local police force.

This medium of application generally takes between 10 to 15 business days before the candidate gets their result.

Pros of applying through the local police force

  • ✔ The local police force is more well known compared to other mediums, even though the legitimacy of the certificate is from the same source (a central government agency).
  • ✔ The local police force may have accessible local Police offices where candidates who are not computer literate can apply,
  • ✔ The local police force issues hard copies to those who apply in their offices,
  • ✔ An officer may be present to guide you through the procedure.

Cons of applying through the local police force

  • The process is manual and may be impractical for people with rigid schedules,
  • You may require several visits to the Police office,
  • It generally takes between 10 to 15 days for applicants to get their certificate,
  • There may be delays in completing your application due to internal structures.

Option 3 - Applying through the Post office

A number of candidates see the local post office as an alternative to applying through the local police force. This process will be a physical process if the applicant decides to visit their local post office to process the application.

The Post office helps the candidates to transfer their police check application to the National Police Checking Service (NPCS) and receive their completed police check certificate. The applicant must accurately fill their informed consent forms and include copies of their verification I.D.

Pros of applying via the post office

  • ✔ The Post office is easily accessible to everyone in Australia,
  • ✔ You may not don’t need multiple visits to the post office,
  • ✔ The police check result will be sent to your listed mail address on completion.
  • ✔ It may be more convenient than applying through the local police force.

Cons of applying via the post office

  • It generally takes between 10 and 15 days to get a result,
  • You may need to visit the post office to verify your identity in person,
  • Internal organisation structures may delay the process,
  • It can be difficult to get instant feedback regarding your application.

How to Apply for the police check online

Of all three popular and standard methods of applying for the police check, the Online application method tends to be the most convenient and quickest way to receive your result.

You can complete the Online application quickly by following the steps;

  1. Get a device with good access to the internet, a P.C, Tablet or Mobile device, and using a strong browser, connect to the online portal of the Australian National Character Check.
  2. Select the "Start a new police check" option on the online portal of ANCC; you will find the Informed Consent Form. If you are below 18, you will need the informed consent of a parent or guardian as part of the application process.
  3. Fill out this form with your accurate details. Your personal data is run against the information on the Criminal database; always be explicit with information.
  4. Select/fill the "Purpose" of the police check; Whether as, employment check, probity check or licensing check and so on.
  5. Make payments via any of the online options; PayPal, Debit/Credit card, and co. If the other party is sponsoring it, you will get an "invite" to complete the police check application via ANCC’s business portal.
  6. Confirm all the information you have filled in on the form. Ensure that you have selected the correct purpose of the check and spelt the details correctly.
  7. If the check is processed for a wrongly selected purpose, you may have to re-apply for another criminal history check.
  8. Add the required Identity Document in your application before you can finally submit a police check application. These IDs prove the person or profile you claim.
  9. Provide the required Identification Documents through;
    • JPEGs, images or other soft copy formats (online application)
    • Scanning and uploading the document (online application)
    • Sending mailed copies (in the case of a physical application).
  10. Complete the informed consent online with your signature before submitting the application.
  11. Use the "Track a Check" option on the website to track the status of the application. The certificates of tracking are also downloadable in case you want to show them as evidence.
  12. Get the soft copy of the police check result. It is sent to the submitted Email address on your application.

If you request the hard copy, it will be forwarded to your submitted postal address.

Can an employer do a police check on their candidate?

An approved employer or third-party organisation can order, manage and track a police check on the candidate they wish to employ via the ANCC Business Portal. Australian National Character Check handles the application form and informed consent form with the applicant.

All applications are completed with the informed consent of the applicant.

Organisations or decision makers that apply for access to the ANCC business portal for police checks undergo a process of approval.

Employers can help their candidate obtain a police check through the following steps;

  • Opening a Business Account on the ANCC website

The ANCC offers services like the accessible business portal that allows employers to streamline the police check process and manage the police check applications of their candidates.

  • Add Candidates/applicants.

The organisation must state and list the name of all the applicants they want to do a criminal background for. The organisation only "Invites" the applicant to complete the police check application; it does not do the check for the applicant.

  • Invite the applicant to complete the police check application

Only the candidate can complete a police check application that the employer or the organisation "Started."

  • Track the process

The employer or organisation can also track the police check application process using the "Track a Check" option of the ANCC. It allows the organisation to estimate the progress of a police check.

  • View results

Approved organisations or employers that do a police check via the business portal can view the nationally coordinated criminal history check results of their candidates and make decisions accordingly.

Does the report on a police check differ based on the application medium?

No, the police check result is a nationwide compilation of the applicant's data on the Australia Criminal database. The online police check result for the purpose of employment, licensing and registrations is not different from a police check obtained through the local police force.

All police check results are sourced from a central government database.

Does the purpose of a police check alter the results?

The police check is conducted based on the purpose of the candidate;

  • Paid employment roles,
  • Licensing,
  • Accreditation,
  • Immigration and Visa (only issued by the Australian Federal Police)

How can I obtain a Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Check?


If you are an individual, you can obtain a Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Check certificate online via Australian National Character Check’s police check application and informed consent form. The results are dispatched via email.

Business and Enterprise Customers

Business and Enterprise customers are able to sign up to ANCC’s business portal where they can order, manage, track and view candidates’ criminal history check results on their business portal. Organisations will undergo a process for approval prior to being granted access to ANCC’s business portal.

ANCC sends an invite to the applicant to complete their Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Check online and handles the application and informed consent form. Contact ANCC’s business and enterprise partnerships team today to enquire about setting up a business portal for your organisation.

Copyright & Disclaimer

The content on this website is communicated to you on behalf of Australian National Character Check™ (ANCC®) pursuant to Part VB of the Copyright Act 1968 (the Act).

The material in this communication may be subject to copyright under the Act. Any further reproduction of this material may be the subject of copyright protection under the Act.

You may include a link on your website pointing to this content for commercial, educational, governmental or personal use.

The contents of this website do not constitute legal advice and should not be relied upon as a substitute for legal or professional advice.

Why use ANCC?


Fast online application form

The online application form can be completed in a few minutes online. 70% of results are dispatched in 24 hours. Approximately 30% can take longer than 15 days due to a 'potential match'.


Australian based support team

All of our staff are based in Canberra, ACT. All data is stored securely in Australia. Each application is checked in accordance with Federal Government guidelines. Support staff are available from Monday to Friday 9AM to 5PM.


Top rated national police check provider

ANCC is amongst the highest rated employment background check providers. Refer to ANCC's Google Reviews and Product Reviews.


Guaranteed to be valid Australia wide

A nationally coordinated criminal history check is valid in all States and Territories of Australia.

Need discount police checks? We beat prices!

About ANCC

ANCC® enables individuals and approved legal entities to apply for a nationally coordinated criminal history check, which is commonly referred to as a national police check. The nationally coordinated criminal history check is valid all over Australia and can be used when applying for Employment, Probity, Licencing, or Commonwealth check purposes. Get discount police checks online. We beat prices!


based on 493 Google Reviews


based on 175 Product Reviews

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Not sure where to start?

Book in a free consultation with us to discuss your organisation's employment background check needs, or to get an overview of the ANCC Business Portal.