POLICE RECORDS: The rules of British citizenship grant certain automatic rights to individuals.
One of those is the right to ask for a copy of the records that the police forces have and share about you.
Asking for a copy of police records has the formal name of a ‘subject access request‘. It is part of the data protection rules in the United Kingdom.
There are several reasons why you might need a subject access request. But, moving to another country would be one of the most common.
You need to contact ACRO to make a subject access request. ACRO stands for the Association of Chief Police Officers Criminal Records Office. The cost to get an additional copy of your police records is £6.
A subject access ACRO criminal records request will contain information from:
- All the police forces in England, Wales, Northern Ireland, the Isle of Man, and Jersey.
- British Transport Police.
Note: The procedure to get a copy of your police records differs in Scotland.
Police Certificate for Visa Application
You can also ask for a police certificate from ACRO if you need it for a visa application. As a rule you need a police certificate for visas to:
- New Zealand
- South Africa
- The United States of America
The cost to get a police certificate is:
- £55 (the standard service takes 10 working days).
- £95 (the premium service takes 2 days).
Personal Record Request: Other Organisations
There may also be a reason to request your personal records from other organisations such as:
- Crown Prosecution Service (CPS)
- HM Courts and Tribunals Service
- HM Prison Service