Sharing national policing information for a safer community
The National Police Checking Service (NPCS) is a service established by CrimTrac and Australian police agencies to provide access to Police History Information (PHI), to support processes assessing the suitability of people applying for employment (including positions of trust, volunteer work) or entitlement (including Australian citizenship, licensing or registration schemes). This PHI is provided through a National Police History Check (NPHC) which is conducted either by an Accredited Organisation or through an Australian police agency. There are currently over 170 Accredited Organisations across the country, which include public and private sector organisations, not-for-profit organisations and commercial entities.
As an individual, you may be required to obtain a NPHC for a number of reasons. These might include:
Obtaining a National Police History Check
It is important to understand that a NPHC can only be conducted if you have provided your Informed Consent to the organisation submitting the check. An organisation requiring a NPHC for you may submit the check request directly to CrimTrac on your behalf, if they are an Accredited Organisation. If they are not accredited, they will either request the check through an Australian police agency or through an accredited broker. Brokers who are Accredited Organisations that have been authorised by CrimTrac to provide NPHCs to employers and individuals.
If you are required to obtain and provide a check on yourself, you can directly apply through an Australian police agency or through a broker. You should check with your employer or the licensing/registration body that you require the NPHC for before submitting your own request with the police or a broker. Some employers and licensing/registration bodies need to conduct the NPHC themselves.
To obtain a National Police Certificate (NPC) through an Australian police agency, click on the links below to access your state or territory police agency’s website:
New Zealand Police are also accredited to access the NPCS.
View List of CrimTrac Accredited Brokers that can provide a NPHC for you.
The NPHC Process
The Accredited Organisation who submits your check will facilitate the following process on your behalf and will liaise with CrimTrac where required.
The organisation that is conducting the NPHC on you will provide you with an Informed Consent form or direct you to their website where you can fill out an electronic form.
Before a NPHC can be submitted on your behalf, you must provide your Informed Consent. That means that a NPHC cannot be conducted on you without your permission, unless relevant legislation allows otherwise. Informed Consent includes (but is not limited to):
You acknowledge your consent and understanding of the above by completing an Informed Consent Form, which is provided to the Accredited Organisation. It is important to understand that any information collected on an Informed Consent form can be used by police for general law enforcement purposes.
You will also be required to provide evidence of your identity as part of the process. When applying through an Accredited Organisation, you will be required to provide 100 points of original or certified copies of identification prior to the check being conducted. These identification documents will be used by the Accredited Organisation to verify your identity. The personal information detailed on your identity documents also forms part of the information you consent to being submitted as part of your check request.
The Proof of Identity Requirements provides detailed information on the 100 point identity check. Please note that CrimTrac is currently undertaking a review of the identity proofing requirements.
A NPHC request will be submitted with the details you provide. Once submitted, an automatic search is conducted against a central index which contains the names of persons of interest (POI) who are known to police. The police agency will then draw on relevant police information to determine whether the your details are a match to the POI. If the police confirm that your details are a match, they will then undertake vetting of any relevant Police History Information (PHI) held in their systems, to determine what will be released as part of the NPHC result. The police agency also takes into account the category and purpose of the check to determine the type and amount of information that is released.
The result of a NPHC will then be provided to the submitting organisation. If any PHI is released on your NPHC, the submitting organisation is required to provide the detail of your NPHC result to you. You should ensure that all information is correct. If you have any questions or concerns regarding the results of your NPHC, you should get in contact with the organisation who submitted your check. They will then liaise with CrimTrac and potentially the police agencies on your behalf.
If you believe that the results of your NPHC are incorrect, you are able to dispute the results released by contacting the organisation that submitted the NPHC request.
The submitting organisation will discuss in detail with you the reason for the dispute. You should provide as much information as possible to assist in the investigation of your dispute, including any documentation that supports your claim. The submitting organisation will contact CrimTrac to have the result investigated by the relevant police agency.
The police will advise CrimTrac of the outcome upon completion of the investigation. CrimTrac will then advise the submitting organisation accordingly, who will then advise you of the outcome.
Individuals are not required to contact CrimTrac or the police agency in regards to the result of their check, unless instructed to do so.
CrimTrac is responsible for facilitating the NPCS and managing the system that Accredited Organisations and Australian police agencies submit checks through. As such, CrimTrac does not submit checks on behalf of individuals. More information can be found in Obtaining a National Police History Check.
Can someone request a NPHC without my consent?
An Accredited Organisation must not request a NPHC from CrimTrac unless you have provided your Informed Consent. More information regarding Informed Consent can be found in the NPCS Process.
Under certain circumstances police can utilise the NPCS, without the consent of an individual, for law enforcement purposes and the administration of justice. This includes, for example, determining if people are eligible for jury service.
If you believe that a NPHC has been conducted without your Informed Consent, the CrimTrac Privacy Officer can be contacted on (02) 6268 7000 or email@example.com or GPO Box 1573 Canberra City ACT 2601.
What information is released in the results of a NPHC?
A NPHC involves identifying and releasing any police history information held about an individual, from all Australian states and territories. The results will indicate either:
The PHI disclosed in the results is determined by each police agency, based on spent conviction legislation and information release policies. The purpose of the NPHC and any other relevant legislation also determines what information can be released.
How long will my NPHC take to process?
Approximately 70% of NPHCs are processed almost instantly and a result is provided to the submitting organisation in a matter of minutes. However, the remaining 30% are referred to one or more police agencies for manual processing.
CrimTrac and it’s Police Partner Agencies aim to process 95% of standard check requests within 10 business days. Due to the manual processing required for all referred NPHCs, there will be times when a check result takes a longer amount of time to finalise. As such, CrimTrac recommends that individuals who require a NPHC always aim to allow as much time as possible to have their NPHC processed.
Please allow a minimum of 10 working days from the date that your check is submitted by the Accredited Organisation or police agency to CrimTrac, for your check result to be released to that organisation. We recommend that you allow sufficient time for processing before making enquiries to the submitting organisation regarding your check.
You can help to ensure that your check is processed as quickly as possible by providing complete and accurate information about yourself in the application form.
A referral of your NPHC to a police agency may occur for a variety of reasons and does not necessarily mean there is police history information about you that will be disclosed.
When a NPHC is submitted into our system, your name, date of birth and gender are run against a central index of names of persons of interest (POI) who are known to police. As such, it is possible that your NPHC has been referred to the police because there is a person in Australia with similar details to yours who is a POI. The police agency will then draw on relevant police information to determine whether your details are a match to the POI. If the police confirm that your details are a match, they will then undertake vetting of any relevant Police History Information (PHI) held in their systems, to determine what will be released as part of the NPHC result. The police agency also takes into account the category and purpose of the check to determine the type and amount of information that is released.
When will I know that my NPHC has been completed?
An Accredited Organisation must ensure that you are notified of your NPHC result as soon as practicable after the result has been released. You should check that the details listed on your result are correct and contact the submitting organsiation if you have any concerns or questions regarding your result.
You may have some questions or concerns regarding your NPHC, which may include:
All enquiries must be directed to the accredited organisation who submitted the check on your behalf. If the organisation is unable to provide an answer to you in the first instance, they will pass the enquiry onto NPCS Customer Support who will assist with clarifying any issues.
How long is my NPHC valid for?
The expiry date of validity of an NPHC is determined by the risk management strategy of the organisation requesting the NPHC. The NPCS offers point in time checking only, meaning that the NPHC result provided is a check of police records only up until the day it is issued. CrimTrac does not determine how long a NPHC is valid for as this is dependent on an organisation’s requirements and risk management practices.
Can I use my NPHC to apply for future employment opportunities?
NPHCs are conducted based on the specific purpose outlined - for instance, a volunteer netball coach or an administration officer. NPHCs are vetted by the police according to the relevant spent conviction legislation/policy, which takes into account the specific purpose for which the check is conducted. As such, a check is only valid for the purpose stated.
Can I recieve a copy of my NPHC?
In order to receive a copy of your NPHC, in the first instance, you should get in contact with the organisation who submitted your check. If, for whatever reason, they are unable to provide a copy of the result to you, you are able to request a copy of your NPHC result from CrimTrac under the Freedom of Information Act 1982 (Cth) or the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth). Visit the Freedom of Information section of our website for more information.
Is there an age limit on getting a NPHC?
Generally, an applicant less than 18 years of age is considered to be a juvenile and the consent of a parent, guardian or legal representative is to be obtained prior to a NPHC being submitted. However, police in each state and territory are governed by spent conviction legislation and/or information release policies which dictates what information can be released about juveniles.
What is Working with Children and/or Vulnerable People Check?
All Australian states and territories have legislated schemes for screening individuals who will be engaged in child and/or vulnerable people related employment or activities. More information about the relevant state or territory Working with Children and/or Vulnerable People schemes can be found in the links provided below:
Who sees the results of my NPHC and why?
The following organisations may have access to the results of your NPHC:
Can you provide me with some detail regarding spent conviction schemes around Australia?
The following links may be helpful in sourcing information on spent convictions in your State/Territory:
As the police are responsible for administering their respective legislation/policy, please contact the relevant police agency directly, if further information or clarification is required.
If you have an enquiry relating to a check submitted through an Accredited Organisation or an Australian police agency, please contact that organisation. If they are unable to provide an answer to you in the first instance, they will pass the enquiry onto CrimTrac who will then provide a response back to them.
However, if you require further information regarding the NPHC process you can contact CrimTrac on 02 6268 7900 or firstname.lastname@example.org.