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Home Resources & Technical Articles Pre-Employment Screening Topics Police Checks Will interstate convictions appear on my police check?

Will interstate convictions appear on my police check?

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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.

People often get confused about the offences or "specifications” for offences that get disclosed on their Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Checks. Some even wonder if the police authorities "handpick" the convictions it discloses on a police check certificate. We can assure you that this is certainly not how it works.

A nationally coordinated criminal history check or ncchc police check in Australia is a record of a person's pending charges, sentences, orders by courts, and findings of guilt by a law court. Therefore all offences you have committed in Australia and within the commonwealth jurisdiction will appear in your ncchc or police check certificate.

Offences that registers as an interstate conviction

There are no special rules that qualify an offence as "interstate". However, the subtle difference in State legislation may remove some offences from a person's police check (who has lived/lives in multiple states).

All "serious" offences, however, are disclosed in the person's background check. The State cannot "compromise" on such offences. These offences are either potentially injurious or an assessment for an individual in certain roles/discipline.

Some of these Disclosable Court Outcomes / information shown on police checks are;

  • Convictions/Charges against corporate organisations
  • Sexually related offences
  • Traffic charges for which an individual is convicted in a court
  • All Sentences and Convictions
  • Pending court charges and offences

What will not show up in an interstate police check?

Some offences do not make it to a person's police check certificate. Some various reasons and classifications make these offences "less serious" or obsolete in a legal court.

Some of these are;

  • Findings of non-guilt.
  • Convictions outside the country.
  • Diversion programs.
  • Punitive measures by third party institutions or other professional bodies/unions.
  • Offences outside the jurisdiction of Australian police agencies/courts.

Who needs an interstate Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Check?

A valid check will remain so in Australia irrespective of the State you obtained it from.

Other roles or job requirements that need a Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Check are;

  • Roles that involve the care of children
  • Roles where the individuals will work in proximity/direct service to the “vulnerable” populations.
  • Teachers/professors
  • Rural Fireman Service
  • Financial roles
  • Solicitors, welfare reps, and many others

How long is a background check valid for?

Since Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Checks are not invalidated by a Change of State/residence within Australia, you may wonder what it does.

Funnily, a check never actually officially expires. Yes - It is a point-in-time check that remains valid from the point of issue till the decision maker or requesting party requests an updated check.

However, most companies usually refuse a background check result older than 3 months.

Why are some offences/convictions interstate?

Some people think it unfair for a past conviction to haunt a candidate in different states. However, a background check is not only a record but also a document of assessment.

A Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Check helps an employer to assess the applicant’s suitability (sometimes legally e.g. Nationally Coordinated Criminal History Checks used in aged care) for the role. It will be just as heinous to employ a recent child offender as a nanny or private teacher.

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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.

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

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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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