Lots of activities in Australia will require you to present a National Police Certificate. The National Police certificate is generally issued directly by a state or territory police force.
If you are after a national criminal history check (or a national police check) for the purpose of employment, volunteering licensing or accreditation then you can obtain this from an accredited agency like Australian National Character Check.
If you are an applicant and require a national police certificate that is issued by a state of territory police force, this can only be obtained directly through a police force of your applicable state or territory. Australian National Character Check is not affiliated with a state or territory Police Force and applicants must obtain one directly through their website. This will require you to have your identification documents certified, then manually post away and cannot be completed using an entirely online process. You should allow a minimum of 10 business days for a National Police Certificate that is issued by a state or territory police force.
Whether you need a national police certificate or a national criminal history check also depends on the purpose the applicants request it for.
Some of the purposes you may need a National Police Certificate for include;
√ Immigration purposes (Visa, Residency permits, and co)
√ Working in Commonwealth roles
√ Adoption purposes
Some of the purposes you may need a National Criminal History Check or a National Police Check include;
√ Licensing and Accreditation
√ Financial/Corporate services
√ Paid services
√ Volunteer purposes
The National Police Certificate you obtain for any of these purposes may not be valid for other purposes. Therefore, the applicant must specify the correct purpose for which they require the check.
The major aim of an organisation / institution requesting a National Police Check is to help make informed decisions and protect the staff, resources and brand at stake.
The National Police Certificate is issued by the Australian Police authority, and an individual can apply in any local Police Station close to them. This process involves person-person interactions and filling paper-based forms.
However, a lot of people find this process stressful and time-consuming and will rather seek alternative means of application; through accredited institutions.
Australian National Character Check (for the purpose of a national criminal history check)
This is one of the popular agencies that provide applicants with their Police Check generally in a shorter time for the purpose of employment, volunteering, licensing and co.
Applicants who apply through the online portal of Australian National Character Check can complete the application process using their PC, Tablets or Mobile device. With a stable internet connection, applications can be completed in as little as five minutes.
On completing your application (including payments), we will transfer your application to the National Police Criminal Database for Checking and verification. Your National Police Clearance result will be mailed electronically to your email address.
The National Police certificate is based on the National Name Index method; it compares your data with others logged on the National Criminal Database and the Police Criminal Records.
You will need to provide information such as;
√ All names; including aliases, monikers, and maiden names
√ Address (es) of all places ever stayed
√ Identification documents to prove your identity
√ Date of Birth
Steps to Apply for a National Police Check Online;
Using your internet-enabled device, log on to through a secure browser to https://www.australiannationalcharactercheck.com.au/Police-Check-Application.html
Select Start a New Check in the options and Proceed to answer the questions.
Choose the correct purpose of the National Police Check (if you select a wrong option, you will have to pay for a new one)
Fill the required fields correctly and carefully (including your preferred e-mail and mail address)
Pay the stipulated fee that appears using any of our advanced online paying options (PayPal, Credit card, Debit Cards, MasterCard, and co.
Cross-Check the information you have provided before submitting
You will get your National Police Clearance emailed to your Email within 48 hours.
If you are after a national police certificate for the purpose of Immigration purposes (Visa, Residency permits, and co), then you must complete this via the Australian Federal Police (AFP) or via the police force of your state or territory
If you are applying for a national police check for employment, Australian National Character Check follows all check applications judiciously and independently. Over 70 per cent of the applications submitted through our agency are delivered rapidly fast with applicants receiving their National Police Clearance within 24 hours.
However, if after 3 days, we do not issue you with your National Police Clearance, your application may be flagged for "manual review". If an application is flagged for manual review, it may delay your application by 3 – 15 days depending on when the official (from the Checking authorities) is satisfied with the application.
A manual review occurs when the Criminal Check algorithm discovers "issues" or a potential match with your data check.
An application being flagged for manual review does not connote that the applicant has failed their Criminal Record Check. It could be due to one of the many reasons below;
The applicant having common or shared data (Name, address, D.O.B) with other data on the Police Criminal Database
Confusing data or alterations in an applicant’s data (changing addresses, names, and co.)
Previous unsorted/unsolved traffic offences may lead to your application to be flagged by the Criminal Police Background Checking Service for verification.
Incomplete or incorrectly filled applications.
A National Police Certificate or a nationally coordinated criminal history check is a collation of all the criminal history and the Police records of an individual.
There are two ways in which your National Police Certificate can return;
No Disclosable Court Outcomes (NDCO): If an applicant has no conviction or offence that is considered releasable by the State legislation or Court, your certificates will return with an NDCO.
Disclosable Court Outcome (DCO): Some applicants may have a history in the State Criminal database or records with the police that are considered releasable under the State legislation. Some of these offences include;
All legal Charges
Good behaviour bonds
Pending trials and convictions
Court appearances and sentences
Traffic offences that lead to sentences
Warrants or court warnings
Finding of guilt with no conviction
However, certain convictions will not appear on an individual’s National Police Certificate depending on the State and Territories (legislations vary in different states). These Convictions are catered for under Australia’s Spent Convictions Scheme.
It should be noted that national police certificates for the purpose of immigration or adoption which are issued by the Australian Federal Police are a full disclosure police check and therefore spent convictions will not apply.
The requirements for convictions that are classified as spent are;
Convictions after ten (10) consecutive years have elapsed for offences committed by an adult (not in a juvenile court)
Convictions after Five (5) consecutive years (3 years for NSW) elapses for offences convicted in a juvenile court (committed by a child)
The individual must not be convicted of any punishable offence during this waiting period, or the period restarts
If a jail term is incurred, the crime-free period begins after the jail term
Convictions stipulated by the court to be considered as Spent if the individual meet some criteria
Under the State legislation or by special court orders, certain convictions or offences will never be considered Spent. Where an applicant has committed any of these offences, it will appear in their Criminal Background Check:
Some of the offences are;
Sexually related convictions
Convictions against corporate organisations and institutions
Convictions stated by the regulations
Convictions for which a prison sentence of six or more months is imposed
If you request a Police Check, you shouldn't be scared of the offences that will come up. Not all offences a person commits will show up in the National Police certificate. Some offences are either "not serious", or out of the jurisdiction of a State court.
Some of the offences that will not come up in a National Police Certificate are;
Findings of non-guilt.
Convictions outside the country.
Punitive measures by third party institutions or other professional bodies/unions.
Offences outside the jurisdiction of Australian police agencies/courts
A National Police Check contains all the criminal history sourced from the States criminal database and other Police records all through the States and territories in Australia. Although the regional names / terms of the certificate may vary, it is equivalent to the;
All residents in Australia, including those on a work permit, and long term stay. If you seek paid employment or volunteer roles in any organisation in Australia, you will need to present your National Police Certificate. For certain roles like work with children, care of aged and vulnerable, financial institutions, and other sensitive positions, it is mandatory under State's and commonwealth legislation.
Australia National Character Check offers its services for both individuals, agencies, corporate bodies, volunteer services and other legal bodies that may need to obtain a Police Check of their employees via the portal for police check for business and enterprise.
If you want to hire a person as a nanny, chauffeur, caretaker or other personal services, you can also obtain their National Police Check on their behalf with their informed consent.
It is important to note that all organisations must obtain the informed consent from the applicant before they apply for the police check. Australian National Character Check’s business portal and online application forms streamline this process. The informed consent covers the use, disclosure and handling of the individual’s National Police History Check.
A National Police certificate is a point-in-time check; it neither expires nor becomes obsolete. It is valid from the point of issue till when you obtain an updated Police certificate. However, every organisation interprets the laws on Police Checks following their internal risk mitigation strategy.
Most organisations or governing bodies will not accept National Police Certificates that are older than 3 months.