Are CRB checks portable on a TUPE transfer?

It is common for employers who are receiving a TUPE transfer in of employers who are subject to CRB checks to carry out their own checks.  Often this is because they are required to do so by the outgoing employer or, if different, the commissioner of the services.  In other cases, they would like the security of carrying out their own checks or even believe they need to do so.

However, in the absence of any such provisions an incoming employer in a TUPE transfer in of employees is entitled to rely on the CRB check of the outgoing employer, provided that the CRB check is “within date” and the individual is still working in the same sector and the same job position. This is because CRB are both sector and job specific.

In this blog entry we briefly review the things you need to think about as an employer in these circumstances.

Is a check “within date”

When to do a CRB check is generally at the discretion and liability of the employer.  However, sector-specific guidance can apply.  The general rule is that checks should be carried out every 3 years.

Is it wise to accept a previously issued CRB Certificate?

Employers should consider the following points when on whether to accept a previously issued CRB check:

  • The transferring employee may have obtained a criminal record since the CRB check was issued so look at how old the check is, even if it is “within date”
  • Find out if any additional information was revealed in a separate letter as enhanced checks may contain ‘additional’ non-conviction information which is withheld from the applicant’s copy in the interests of the prevention or detection of crime.
  • Do the identity details on the certificate match those of the applicant?
  • Is the CRB check authentic? The following security features can be used to verify whether a  CRB certificate and their absence will mean it has been counterfeited:
    • A ‘crown seal’ watermark repeated down the right hand side of the certificate
    • The word ‘Disclosure’ appears across both sides of the document. The colour of this pattern is uniform across the front of the certificate but alternates between pink and green on the reverse side.
    • Ink and paper that will change colour in the presence of water or solvent-based liquid.

If you are unsure whether a CRB certificate is genuine, you should contact the CRB Information Line on Tel 0870 90 90 811.

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