for better mental health

DBS checks and your mental health

Explains what a DBS check is, and what you can do if you are unhappy with the information held about you by the police, including information about your mental health.

Overview

Quick facts

  • A DBS check is a way for employers to check your criminal record, to help decide whether you are a suitable person to work for them.
  • DBS stands for the Disclosure and Barring Service, which is the public agency responsible for processing requests for criminal record checks.
  • Depending on what kind of job you are applying for, there are four different types of DBS check: basic DBS check, standard DBS check, enhanced DBS check and enhanced DBS with list check.
  • A basic or standard DBS check won't include information about your mental health problem. An enhanced DBS check could include details of any non-conviction information held about you on local police records which the police consider relevant. This may include information about your mental health.
  • If you are not happy about the information disclosed in your DBS check, you can ask the Disclosure and Barring Service to carry out a review.
  • If your job offer is withdrawn because of a DBS check, you may be able to challenge it on the grounds of disability discrimination.

This information was published in November 2018. We will revise it in 2021.

References are available on request. If you would like to reproduce any of this information, see our page on permissions and licensing.

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