DBS barring referral guidance

Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) guidance about referrals, barred lists and barring decision making.

DBS caseworkers make decisions about who should be placed in the child barred list and/or adults barred list and are prevented by law from working with children or vulnerable groups.

Referrals should be made to DBS when an employer or organisation believes a person has caused harm or poses a future risk of harm to vulnerable groups, including children.

An employer or volunteer manager is breaking the law if they knowingly employ someone in a regulated activity with a group from which they are barred from working.

A barred person is breaking the law if they seek, offer or engage in regulated activity with a group from which they are barred from working.

If you don’t need detailed guidance you can read the quick guide about DBS barred lists.

Barring and referral guidance

Guidance about regulated activity with children has been published by the Department for Education (DfE).

Information about regulated activity with adults is available from the Department of Health (DH).

Barring decision making

The barring decision making process used by DBS caseworkers and information about appeals and reviews.

Referral form and guidance (paper form)

Use this form to refer a person to the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).

You can read more about the barring referral process in our guidance section.

Register for a digital account

Register for a DBS online services account, which will enable us to engage and communicate with you more securely.

Operations (barring) QMS Quality Policy

Published 28 August 2013
Last updated 4 May 2018 + show all updates
  1. Operations (barring) QMS Quality Policy added.

  2. A new link has been added to the contents (Register for a digital account), to enable users to register for a DBS online services account.

  3. Updated the link for regulated activity with children.

  4. First published.