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The Do’s & Don’ts When Verifying ID Documents

As the nominated ‘ID Verifier’, you play a pivotal part in the DBS application process. Your responsibility is to establish the true identity of the applicant through the examination of a range of documents, in line with the DBS’s guidelines.

It’s important that the ID Verification process is done correctly, to ensure the application is 100% correct before it is sent to the DBS to be processed. If an application is sent to the DBS inaccurately it could result in delays to the application or the application may have to be submitted again at the same cost.

We asked our experienced Advisors to share their top tips on the do’s and don’ts when verifying ID throughout the DBS process:


  • Only accept valid, current and original documentation. Ask the applicant to present them to you rather than sending to you by email or fax
  • In the first instance, verify 3 ID documents from the DBS’s list of approved documents. At least 1 of the documents must be from Group 1
  • A document from each of the groups should be included only once in the document count e.g. Don’t accept two bank statements as two of the required documents if they are from the same bank
  • Check that all information presented to you on the ID documents e.g. Title, Address, Name, Date of Birth etc. matches the information entered by the applicant on their DBS application form
  • If in doubt, don’t accept it. If you are not completely satisfied that the information on a document is 100% accurate or it may differ from the information entered by the applicant on the application form, do not put this through and either seek advice from Personnel Checks or ask the applicant to clarify


  • Rush – this is a very important part of the DBS application process and it’s an opportunity to ensure the information is 100% accurate before submitting the completion to the DBS. Take your time to ensure the documents have been thoroughly checked and that there are no discrepancies.
  • Amend the information entered by the applicant on the application form without checking with them first. Doing this will invalidate the declaration by the applicant and may breach data protection legislation. If you notice something on their ID documents is different to the information entered by the applicant, speak to the applicant to find out why there is a discrepancy.
  • Accept photocopies of ID or documents that have been printed from the Internet e.g. bank statements. If the applicant does not receive bank statements through the post, they can visit their local bank branch and request that they print an official statement stamped by the bank.
  • Accept the foreign equivalent of an identity document if that document is listed as ‘(UK)’ on the list of valid identity documents
  • Accept the ‘Counterpart’ Driving Licence as this is no longer a valid piece of ID. In group 1 there is a document you can choose from named ‘Current Driving Licence Photo Card’ or if they have an old style paper Driving Licence you can select the option in Group 2a named ‘Old Style Paper Driving Licence’


If you have any questions when verifying the ID of an applicant please don’t hesitate to call our Advisors on 01254 355688.


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