July 13, 2024
acro police certificate

ACRO Police Certificate – What You Need to Know About?

Are you planning to move to the UK or travel abroad soon? One important document you’ll need is an ACRO Police Certificate. But what exactly is it, and how does it differ from a DBS check? In this blog, we’ll provide you with all the information you need to know about ACRO Police Certificates. We’ll discuss what it is, how long it takes to get one, what documents you’ll need, and what shows up on the certificate. Additionally, we’ll cover how long the certificate lasts and if it’s the same as a DBS check. Keep reading to gain insight into this important document and get all your questions regarding ACRO Police Certificates answered.

What is an ACRO Police Certificate?

What is an ACRO Police Certificate

An ACRO Police Certificate is a document produced by ACRO (Acro Criminal Records Office), which provides an account of an individual’s history of involvement with the police and judiciary services while in the UK. This document can be obtained by applying online at the Criminal Records Office. A person with no criminal record can expect to receive their certificate within 7-10 working days. The certificate is useful for people who are seeking jobs, visas, or immigration to countries outside of the UK. The certificate will need additional legalisation for these countries which are outside of the Hague Convention.

How Long Does It Take to Get ACRO?

How Long Does It Take to Get ACRO

The timeframe for obtaining an ACRO police certificate is typically 7-10 working days if the applicant has a clean record. However, the application may take significantly longer if an applicant has a criminal record. A premium service is available for those in need of the certificate within a shorter timeframe.

Is an ACRO Police Check the Same as a DBS?

Is an ACRO Police Check the Same as a DBS

ACRO Police Checks and DBS Checks are two different types of criminal record checks. While an ACRO Police Check is issued by the ACRO Criminal Records Office, a DBS Check (formerly known as a CRB Check) is issued by the Disclosure and Barring Service. ACRO Police Checks are primarily used for overseas jobs, visas or emigration, whereas a DBS certificate Check can be used to apply for any job within the UK.

One main difference is that an ACRO Police Check requires an original signature, whereas a DBS Check requires applicants to upload a photograph of themselves and provide digital signatures. It is essential to ensure which type of check is needed for your purpose, as applying for the wrong check can lead to complications later.

What Shows Up on ACRO Police Check?

What Shows Up on ACRO Police Check

An ACRO Police Check is a certificate confirming whether the person has a criminal record in the United Kingdom and may include any foreign criminal history. This certificate is mostly obtained for immigration purposes abroad and is used by people applying for work or business visas in a foreign country. If you’re looking to obtain an ACRO Police Certificate, you can apply online with the Criminal Records Office.

After obtaining the certificate, it needs to be apostilled by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) to confirm the authenticity of the UK document’s signature, seal, or stamp. It is always a good idea to disclose all relevant information in your application so that the certificate includes all relevant details. Therefore, it is a wise choice to get an ACRO Police Check before applying for visas to avoid future complications.

What Documents Do I Need for ACRO?

What Documents Do I Need for ACRO

If you need an ACRO Certificate for any reason, there are a few things you need to know about the documents required. ACRO (Association of Chief Police Officers, Criminal Records Office) produces a police clearance certificate that details your police and judicial history while in the UK. This certificate is widely accepted in all sectors and job roles.

However, if you want to use it abroad, you will need an apostille issued by the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO). This apostille confirms the authenticity of your UK document’s signature, seal or stamp. It is important to ensure all documents are complete and up-to-date to avoid any confusion or delays in the process. So, make sure to gather all the necessary documents before applying for an ACRO Certificate.

How Long is ACROUK Police Check Valid for?

How Long is ACROUK Police Check Valid for

An ACROUK police certificate is valid for 12 months from the date of issuance in the United Kingdom. If you plan to use the certificate for immigration purposes abroad, an apostille issued by the Foreign & Commonwealth Office may be required. The ACRO Apostille confirms the authenticity of UK documents’ signatures, seals, or stamps. If you require a police certificate, you can request it from ACRO. It usually takes 10 working days to process and costs £55. Alternatively, you can opt for a premium service that guarantees delivery within 2 days for £95. If the country you are travelling to is not part of the Hague Convention, the certificate will also require legalisation from the relevant UK-based Embassy and the FCO.


An ACRO Police Certificate is a legal document used to know about an individual’s criminal history from abroad. It is crucial to obtain an ACROPolice certificate if you plan to work or volunteer in certain industries or countries. The ACRO certificate shows any criminal convictions or cautions for which the individual has been sentenced, regardless of the time frame. It’s important to have all relevant documents before applying for the certificate. The certificate is valid for a year from the date of issue.

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