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How to ask for Police Records

There may be a time when you need to get a copy of your police records. This page explains how to ask the police for a copy of the information they hold about you.

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:

  • Australia
  • Belgium
  • Canada
  • 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

How to get a Police Report in the United Kingdom