There are a huge number of jobs and voluntary positions which require a DBS check to be done, covering everything from working as a carer to taking an administrative position in some medical settings. For many people, getting their DBS checks completed and signed off won’t be a problem. But for some people, especially young people who have not long left school, this can be more of a challenge. The first part of any DBS check is proof of identity – establishing your name, and that the person applying for the DBS matches the photograph on the identification. Usually, the forms of identification asked for are either passport or driving licence, but what happens when you have neither?


Group 1 – Primary Identification Documents

The DBS rules require that all applicants show at least one of the following documents:

  • Passport
  • UK biometric residence permit
  • Driving licence
  • Birth certificate.

If you don’t have any of these documents then don’t panic – there are other groups of documents which can also be submitted to prove your identity for DBS purposes.


Group 2

If you don’t have a passport, driving licence or your birth certificate, you might be able to use other forms of identification known as “trusted government documents”. These include items such driving licences issued outside the EU, a Forces ID card, firearms licence or marriage certificate. You’ll also have to produce other documents which are known as “financial and social history documents”. These include mortgage statements, bank statements, council tax bills, P60 or a utility bill. All of these documents have to be recent. In the case of your P60 it should be for the most recently ended tax year, and for statements and bills, be issued within the last three months. If you’ve opted to receive digital statements or bills from your bank or utility provider they will usually agree to send you a printed copy on request, but might charge you a small fee for doing so.


Still Struggling?

Young people who are still living at home might still struggle to produce these sorts of documents. They’re not listed on their parents’ mortgage statement or Council Tax bill, aren’t working so don’t get a P60, and don’t have utility bills in their name either. If all else fails, the DBS will accept a letter from a head teacher or college principal to verify the identity of the young person. This only applies to people aged 16 to 19 and in full time education, and only when the person concerned can’t produce a passport, driving licence or other formal identification documents. Going forward, it makes sense to start trying to build up an identity history in your own right as soon as it is practical to do so; apply for a provisional driving licence even if you’re not thinking about taking driving lessons, or take out a mobile phone contract in your own name. This will make things a lot easier to get your DBS next time round.