Do private drivers need to have a DBS check?
Private drivers and chauffeurs are responsible for transporting a wide variety of different passengers, including children and vulnerable adults.
This puts private hire drivers in a position of trust, making it more important than ever that they are properly vetted and found suitable for the role.
To ensure public safety, strict regulations govern the licensing of private hire drivers. Among these protective measures is the requirement for all individuals applying to become a private hire driver to have an enhanced DBS check.
In this article, we will learn more about DBS checks for private hire drivers, whether they’re mandatory, and their important role in the private hire sector.
What is a DBS check?
In the UK, it is common for employers to carry out background checks on individuals before employing them. One common type of background check is the DBS check.
DBS stands for Disclosure and Barring Service. The DBS conducts DBS checks to check whether an individual has any convictions, cautions, reprimands, or warnings on their criminal record.
Carrying out a DBS check is particularly important when employing a person to work in a role with children or vulnerable adults.
There are three different levels of DBS check:
Basic DBS check – Only returns details of any unspent convictions.
Standard DBS check – Returns details of both spent and unspent convictions, warnings, cautions, and reprimands.
Enhanced DBS check – Reveals the same details as the standard DBS check plus any relevant police notes stored on file. An enhanced DBS check can also check if the person appears on the list of people permanently barred from working with children or vulnerable adults.
A DBS check’s results can help employers make informed and safe recruitment decisions.
Are DBS checks for private drivers a legal requirement?
In the UK, the Department for Transport’s statutory guidance states that all taxi and private hire drivers must have an enhanced DBS check.
You cannot legally work as a private hire or taxi driver without obtaining the relevant licence from your local authority. These licensing authorities cannot issue a licence to individuals who do not have an enhanced DBS certificate.
Why are DBS checks important for private drivers and chauffeurs?
The primary reason why it is so important for private drivers and chauffeurs to complete an enhanced DBS check is public safety.
Private hire drivers are responsible for safely transporting people from point A to B. They transport different passenger types, including potentially vulnerable individuals like children, older adults, and people with disabilities. The close and unsupervised nature of private driving and chauffeuring puts drivers in a position of trust. Passengers put their trust in the integrity and professionalism of these drivers, and the requirement for private drivers to undergo an enhanced DBS check ensures that the driver has no criminal convictions and helps to mitigate risk.
A DBS for private hire driver also reassures customers and the general public that drivers have been vetted and deemed appropriate for the role. This helps to build trust and protect the private hire company’s reputation.
How often do private drivers require a DBS check?
Government guidance was recently updated to make it mandatory for private drivers and chauffeurs to sign up for the DBS Update Service. This online subscription service helps keep enhanced DBS certificates up-to-date and allows employers to check your certificate online, with your consent. Signing up for the DBS Update Service costs just £13 per year.
Driven Worldwide DBs private hire driver
Here at Driven Worldwide, all of our chauffeurs and DBS private hire drivers are meticulously vetted and DBS-checked to give you peace of mind that you are in the hands of a trusted professional.
Whether you require a private driver for a roadshow, managed project, client services, conference or event, we’ve got you covered.
Operating in over 1,500 locations globally, our private hire and chauffeur services are trusted by some of the largest companies in the world.