Visa's and Immigration

Overseas Criminal Record Check

If you’re a doctor relocating to the UK from overseas, you’ll need to provide an overseas criminal record check for both your visa application and your employer’s pre-employment checks. This guidance explains the rules, who can apply and how to do this.


Who needs to apply for an overseas criminal record certificate?

All migrants applying under the Skilled Worker or Health and Care Worker who want to be employed in the health, education or social care sectors must provide a criminal record certificate. They must show this to both their employer and include it in their visa application.


Applying for a criminal record certificate if you have lived in more than one country

A criminal record certificate is needed from the relevant authority in all countries in which you have lived for at least 12 months. This is for both a continuous basis or throughout the ten years prior to applying and while you’ve been aged 18 or over.


Where can I get information on how to get a criminal record check in my country?

The manner in how to submit an application can vary from country to country. Some you may need to apply in person, whereas others may be by post, email or online. The application process may involve a formal written and signed application.

In most cases, you’ll need to provide some form of documentary evidence such as a passport. Some cases may also need a letter from your employer or the relevant authorities with an explanation for the disclosure request.

Details of how to obtain an overseas criminal record check can be found on the gov.uk website. This includes information on how to apply and the relevant contact details.


How long does it take to get a criminal record check?

How long it takes all depends on the country responsible for supplying the certificate and whether the application is made in that country or from the UK. In some cases, a criminal record check can be carried out the same day but in other cases, it could take weeks or months.


Looking for more information about the visa application process? Visit our dedicated visas and immigration blogs page.


If you’re interested in working in the UK and would like to discuss the positions available in your specialty, and how we can assist you, please contact our team.