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How to get a police check in South Australia (SA)

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.


Government approved services like ANCC make the process easier and faster for candidates that want to apply for police checks online.

The police check certificates have become one of the most important documents. Not only do government agencies now use it, but private organisations adopt it as a risk mitigation strategy. So, you will likely need a police check if you want to apply for any role or accreditation. These roles can either be;

  • Paid employments
  • Licensing (Firearms, Real Estate)
  • Accreditation

If any of these intended roles involves proximity to children, vulnerable, and other sensitive positions, then having a police record check certificate is essential.

Applying for a police history check

There are various ways a candidate can apply for a police check, yet the same type of Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Check is issued no matter where they apply from. However, depending on the requesting agency, any of the following channels are fine.

  • Online application via ANCC
  • The fastest and easiest way to apply for a police history check is via online approved service providers. Candidates can complete their application from anywhere with a PC, Tablet or mobile device.

    The fast and secure payment option on this platform makes it all easy for candidates who apply.

    Generally, the processing time for online police check applications yield the majority of results in less than 48 hours with the remaining that get referred for manual processing taking longer. The application method can be completed online.

  • Local Police office
  • Some organisation or purpose may require you to apply for the police record check straight from the local Police office. For these requests, you should visit the local Police office and open an application with them.

    Applying through the local police office means physical visits for ID verification.

    In addition, the process may be a bit rigid. Applications should allow at least 10 business days before results return.

  • The Local Post office
  • Your local post office can also serve as a medium between you and the national check agency. And similar to the physical application, you must provide copies of your identification documents (ID’s) for the police check for verification.

Is there any difference among the police check results issued by the various Channels?

All Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Check results are issued by a central government database as per individual state laws on criminal records disclosure. It contains the current releasable police or criminal records of the person up till the point of issue.

If you need a check for an application, any of the following channels will do. However, an employer can specify a provider which is their preferred provider.

What ID documents do I submit for a police check application?

Any of the requested ID documents you submit for verification must confirm the following data you submit;

  • Your full name
  • Date of Birth
  • Address(es)
  • A self photograph (selfie) that demonstrates liveness (for biometric analysis with your ID’s)
  • A verifiable photograph should be present in any of the IDs you provide.

Any supporting documents that validate the data/ID documents can also be presented. The required ID is divided into 4 categories;

  1. One (1) Commencement of ID document;
    • ✔ Australian birth certificate issued by the Registry of Births Deaths and Marriages (Australian Government Unit) - not an extract or birth card
    • ✔ Australian Citizenship Certificate
    • ✔ Australian visa (supported by a foreign passport) current at the time of entry into Australia as a resident or touris
    • ✔ Australian passport (not expired; however, if the Document Verification System (DVS) is used to verify the passport, it may be up to 3 years expired)
    • ✔ ImmiCard issued by the Department of Home Affairs

  2. One (1) Primary Use in Community Document;
    • ✔ Australian passport (not expired; however, if the Document Verification System (DVS) is used to verify the passport, it may be up to 3 years expired)
    • ✔ An Australian driver licence, learner permit or provisional licence issued by a State or Territory, showing signature and/or photo
    • ✔ ImmiCard issued by the Department of Home Affairs to assist visa holders to provide evidence of their Commencement of Identity in Australia
    • ✔ A passport issued by a country other than Australia with a valid visa or valid entry stamp or equivalent
    • ✔ Proof of age or photo identity card issued by an Australian government agency which shows the name, date of birth, photo and signature of the individual
    • ✔ For persons aged under 18 years with no other Primary Use in Community Documents, a student identity document issued by an Australian government agency or Australian school only.

  3. Two (2) Secondary Use in Community Documents;
    • ✔ Medicare card
    • ✔ Enrolment with the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC)
    • ✔ Working with children or vulnerable people card issued by an Australian state or territory government unit;
    • ✔ Tax File Number issued by the Australian Taxation Office
    • ✔ Bank card, credit card (without recording the payment card number/s)
    • ✔ Australian secondary or tertiary student photo identity document
    • ✔ Certified academic transcript from an Australian university
    • ✔ Foreign government issued driver licence. Documents in languages other than English must be accompanied by a NAATI accredited translation
    • ✔ Firearms licence
    • ✔ Security Guard/Crowd Control photo licence
    • ✔ Evidence of right to a government benefit (DVA or Centrelink)
    • ✔ Police Force Officer photo identity card
    • ✔ Australian Defence Force photo identity card
    • ✔ Aviation security identification card
    • ✔ Maritime security identification card
    • ✔ Credit reference check
    • ✔ Trusted referees report

What are the steps to applying for a police history check for applicants?

For physical applications, you must visit the local post office or the police office. There is an attendant to walk you through the application process, including extra details and information.

Steps for applying online via ANCC -

These are the important steps to complete an online background check application;

  1. Select the “Start a new police check” button on the portal of the Australian National Character Check
  2. Complete the application form provided with accurate details of the examples listed above
  3. Fill in all contact details and extra information required on the check. Cross-check previous data you entered.
  4. Select and fill the purpose of the application;
  5. Complete payments via any of the 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)
  7. Send all IDs before you can finally submit the Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Check application
  8. Sign the informed consent online before submitting the application
  9. Use our “Track a Check” option on the website to track the status of the application. The certificates are also downloadable.
  10. Get an electronic copy of the police check result. It is sent to the Email address on your application.

Can a police check result take longer than 24 hours?

With the ANCC, over 70% of candidates get their results delivered to them within 48 hours. It is one of the reasons most people start an application online.

However, some applications can hit a snag, no fault of ours or other accredited bodies. This can lead to delays when the person gets their police criminal check results. The following reason may contribute to the application delayed;

  • Manual reviewing
  • If the check algorithm flags an application for “manual review”, an official must supervise the police check manually. It is usually a result of errors, shared names and confusing data on the application.

    A manual review will delay a police check by a further 10-15 business days.

    However, a manual review does not translate to a “failed police check”.

  • A lot of Criminal database source
  • Furthermore, if an applicant has lived in numerous States/Territories, the checking resource is wider. A police check compares data from all Police and Criminal databases as it relates to the individual. It can also delay a check result by a further 10 business days.

Wrapping Up

The police check is beneficial to both the bearer and employers. Many SA based organisations have for this and many reasons adopt it as a risk mitigation strategy.

The convenient way to obtain a police check is to apply via the Australian National Character Check (ANCC).

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?

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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'.

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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.

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

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Guaranteed to be valid Australia wide

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

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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!

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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.