DBS Checks for Photographers: What Checks do you need?

Do photographers need DBS Checks?

There are lots of different situations in which you might need a DBS Check, and we often get asked whether specific professions and roles are eligible for a check.

If you’re a photographer wondering whether or not you should get a DBS Check, then this blog is for you…


Do Photographers Need DBS Checks?


The different levels of DBS Check


First of all, let’s go over the different types of DBS Check available.

There are three different levels of DBS Check: Basic, Standard and Enhanced.

  • A Basic Check will reveal any unspent convictions or cautions the applicant has.
  • A Standard Check will reveal any spent or unspent convictions, cautions, reprimands or warnings the applicant has.
  • An Enhanced Check will reveal the same information as a Standard Check, as well as any relevant information held by local police.

Basic DBS Checks don’t have any eligibility requirements – anyone aged 16 or over can apply for one. However, you must meet specific eligibility requirements to get one of the higher level checks.


DBS Checks for Photographers


So – do photographers need DBS Checks?

The answer isn’t a simple yes or no. This will depend on what’s involved in the specific photographer’s role.

The role of a photographer in itself doesn’t meet the eligibility criteria for a Standard or Enhanced Check.

However, a photographer may be eligible for a higher level check if they regularly work in an establishment that qualifies them for one.


When do Photographers need DBS Checks?


Anyone who carries out regulated activity with children and/or adults is eligible for an Enhanced DBS Check with a check of the children’s and/or adults’ barred list.

The barred lists are two lists maintained by the DBS detailing people who have been barred from working with children or vulnerable adults. If a DBS applicant is working in regulated activity with children and/or adults, their application will be checked against the relevant list/s.

A photographer will be carrying out regulated activity if they frequently work in schools, nurseries or care homes. ‘Frequently’ means at least once a week or on three or more occasions in any 30-day period.

For more information about regulated activity, see the DBS Child Workforce Guide and Adult Workforce Guide.

If a photographer frequently works in hospitals or hospices and has access to patients who are receiving healthcare, they’ll be eligible for a Standard DBS Check.

Photographers who don’t work frequently in any of these establishments will only be eligible for a Basic DBS Check.


How can Photographers get DBS Checks?


If a photographer is eligible for a Standard or Enhanced Check, their employer or the establishment where they’re working should apply for a check for them. Individuals cannot apply for Standard or Enhanced Checks for themselves.

Basic Checks can be requested by their employer or directly by the individual. Photographers who would like to apply directly can do so through our website.


Do Photographers need DBS Checks: A summary


To summarise:

  • Photographers who work frequently in schools, nurseries or care homes will be eligible for an Enhanced Check.
  • Photographers who work frequently in hospitals or hospices and have access to patients will be eligible for a Standard Check.
  • In other cases, photographers will be eligible for a Basic Check.

We hope this blog has answered your questions, but if you want to know more, don’t hesitate to drop us a line – we’d be happy to chat.