What is classed as a ‘Personal or Family Arrangement’ by the DBS?

November 19th, 2015 by Jonathan Bazely

A family arrangement is a relationship which involves close family or those who live in the same household and treat each other as family.

A personal, non-commercial arrangement exists where no money changes hands, or any money changing hands is given outside of a commercial arrangement. An example would be gifting a friend some petrol money for travel to a Hospital appointment.

A personal arrangement can still exist if money changes hands to pay an individual directly for services, without any third party involved.

These types of arrangement are excluded from Regulated Activity and are not eligible for an Enhanced Level DBS check under the Regulated Activity requirements.

If an individual is employing someone directly they cannot ask them to apply for a DBS certificate, even if the role is eligible. This is because, as an individual, they are not employed for the purposes of making a suitability decision i.e. it is not their job to assess suitability. The legislation does not allow such an individual to request and assess criminal record information, as part of a DBS check. Where an agency or third party is used, this third party would be responsible for requesting the criminal record checks, and assessing content.

Can I request a DBS check on my nanny or personal carer?

If an individual is employing the nanny or personal carer directly (i.e. not through a third party, referral organisation or agency) then generally they will not be able to request a DBS check. This would be classed as a personal arrangement even if you are asking the nanny or personal carer to assist with another family member. For those who do employ these types of worker through a third party, it will normally be that third party that requests the check to ensure suitability for the role on offer.

For more information on requesting checks under a family or personal arrangement please see our Basic Criminal Record Checks page.

Related Questions:

Who can ask for a DBS check?

Can I check myself or a family member?