The police check is an official document that is based on the background information of an individual which lists the criminal charges against the individual. The document is usually issued by the Australian police agencies.

Information contained in the check

The check contains all the disclosable court outcomes (DCOs) of an individual. Instances of these offences include the following:

  • Charges made against an individual for offences in corporate organizations are included on the check.
  • Any individual involved in sexual crimes would have it stated on their check. This covers all sorts of crimes in relation with sexual offences.
  • Any sort of traffic charges against the applicant are included on the check.
  • Pending court charges of an individual are stated on it. This as well as sentences and convictions. However, in some states, spent sentences and convictions are not included in the check. A conviction is considered spent if about 5 years have passed if the individual was convicted as a minor or if about ten years have passed if the individual was convicted as an adult.

Reasons for police check application in the employment section

  • Companies do this to protect their integrity and name of their brand which is heavily reliant on their employees and employment policy.
  • Companies also do this to protect their customers, interests and working property. Their employment policy says a lot about their working environment too.
  • Companies that take care of vulnerable individuals such as the elderly are under a mandate by the law to request an Aged care check for employees including volunteers.

However, it is against the law to prevent a person from getting a job based on a past criminal charge especially when the past charge will in no way get in the way of the job. Companies should never discriminate against a person’s past criminal record or charge when considering the person for a job.

Requirements for the check

  • The check is required when the individual would be working in the close proximity rendering service to vulnerable individuals such as young children or the aged.
  • An individual who is applying for a Commonwealth related job would need to have a check.
  • When an individual is seeking to adopt a child, a check is also required. This time, the check must be processed through the Australian Federal Police.
  • Individuals wishing to immigrate must have the check. For this purpose, the check must also be processed through the Australian Federal Police.
  • When applying for a visa, a check is necessary. The check must also be processed through the Australian Federal Police. The same applies for individuals seeking jobs overseas.
  • When getting licenses or accreditations for positions, a check is required. This includes positions such as nurses, real estate agents, medical laboratory scientists, public vehicle drivers etc.
  • Individuals to be employed in sensitive job positions or a position which requires lots of trust need a check.
  • Volunteers in certain organizations need a check such as those working with vulnerable individuals.