On this page, you’ll find answers to questions people ask most often about the service for criminal record checks (also known as criminal conviction history checks).

You can contact the criminal records team at CCHonline@justice.govt.nz

For more contact details, refer to Contact us.

On this page

Request your own criminal record (individual requests)

I want to request my own criminal record check. How can I do this?

You can apply online for a criminal record check. If you’re unable to apply online, you can still fill out a paper form. This service will remain free of charge for both options.

I want to request my own criminal record check but can’t do it online. Where can I get a paper form?

You’ll find a copy of the paper form on our website or you can get one from your local District Court.

If you want to make a request for a criminal record before the new online service becomes available, you will need to use the current paper options.

Find out how to get your own criminal record

How will I receive the results of my criminal record check?

If you apply online, you’ll receive your results by email. Email results are treated as a formal document in the same way as if you received them in the post.

If you apply using a paper form, you can choose whether you receive your results by email or in the post (note - you can only choose one option).

I’ve requested my own criminal record check. Can I pass the results on to a third party, for example, an employer?

Once you receive your criminal record check results, you can share them with anyone you want. If you chose to receive your results by email, they’re treated as a formal document in the same way as if you received them in the post.

How long is a criminal record check valid for?

There’s no set timeframe. Different organisations and employers have different requirements about how current they want your criminal record check to be. There’s no expiry date on the results you receive – only the date it was requested.

I’ve requested my own criminal record check. Can the Ministry of Justice send it directly to a third party, for example, an employer?

No. We’ll send the results directly to you, and you can then pass them on to anyone else you choose to.

How long will it take to receive my criminal record check results?

We aim to respond to all requests within three working days.

The online form still requires a signature. Can I use an electronic signature?

Yes, you can, provided your electronic signature matches the signature on the identification document you provided with your application. We’re unable to accept typed signatures.

Can I request a criminal record check if I don’t have an email address?

Yes. You can apply using a paper form. Just tick the option on the form that you’d like to receive the results by post.

You’ll need to have a valid postal address to receive the results of your check.

Can I submit a criminal record check on behalf of someone else (for example, an elderly relative or someone who can’t do it themselves)?

You can help someone to complete the form. However, they’ll need to sign the form to acknowledge that they consent to the request being made.

Can I be sent a hard copy of the results in a Ministry of Justice envelope?

You can only receive a hard copy of the results if you apply using a paper form. The results you receive by email are the same as the results you’ll receive in the post.

I don’t think the results of my criminal record check are correct, what can I do?

If you think the results of your check are incorrect, contact us at CCHonline@justice.govt.nz and we will look into it.

If I made an error in my initial criminal record check request, can I alter my request?

No, we are unable to amend the information on the request once it has been submitted. If you made an error, you will need to submit a new request.

How can I track the progress of my criminal record check request? Do I get a reference number?

We don’t have a tracking service for individual requests or for paper form applications. If you apply online and tick the box to receive a confirmation email once you’ve completed your request, you’ll receive a reference number.

Can I submit a criminal record check request at the District Court?

Yes, you can hand in a completed paper copy of the application form at your local District Court. They’ll send the form on to the Criminal Records team.

Do I need a postal address to submit a criminal record check request online?

No, but you’ll need to provide your residential address.

Is there a limit to the number of criminal record checks I can request for myself?

No, you can submit as many requests as you need.

I need the results urgently – can my criminal record check request be fast-tracked?

Unfortunately, we can’t fast-track requests. We aim to respond to all requests within three working days.

Will the criminal conviction history report look the same is it currently does?

Yes, there will be no change to the look of the results letter.

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Request someone else’s criminal record (third party requests)

Register for the new online service

How do we register for the online service?

If we haven’t already contacted you and you’d like to register for the new online service, please get in touch with us so we can send you all the information you need to register.

Registering for the service requires you to:

  • sign a contract with the Ministry
  • demonstrate that you can keep applicant information secure and confidential, and
  • provide us with contact details for one or more staff members who will act as your customer administrators and manage your service users.

Once we’ve received your signed contract, we’ll set up your administrator/s and provide them with user guides. They can then set up and train your organisation’s other users.

The new system will be relatively easy to use; however, support will be available should you need help.

To begin the registration process, you’ ll need to complete and return the following documents:

You can email your completed documents to: CCHonline@justice.govt.nz.

Can I register as a third party for the new online service at any time?

Yes, you can register any time from now.

Do I have to pay to register?

No, registering for the service is free. You’ll only be charged for each of the criminal record check requests you submit.

I’m currently registered with the Criminal Records team as a priority customer – what does this change mean for me?

You’ll need to submit all requests using the online process once the service goes live (scheduled for 3 May 2021).

  • There will be one flat fee for all requests. You’ll have the option of paying for these by credit card, or you can continue to receive invoices.
  • You can login to your own dashboard to manage your requests.
  • On your dashboard, you’ll be able see all requests you’ve submitted in the last 90 days.

The third-party customer user guides for the new online service can be found below:

How long does registration last?

You’ll remain registered until one of the parties (you or the Ministry) terminates the contract.

The business I’m registering as a third-party user has multiple sites (for example, Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch). Does each site need to independently register?

No. You only need to register once for multiple locations of your business.

My business has multiple sites, does the admin user(/s) need to be based at one of the sites or can they be based at a different location (e.g. Head Office)?

No, it doesn’t matter where the admin is physically located. Each site must have an admin assigned it, but the admin does not need to be located at that site.

What happens to my registration if the company changes hands?

You’ll need to register under the new company.

Replacing the current third party customer service options

Is there a crossover period for the current priority service?

No, once the new service goes live all requests will need to come through the new webservice. The current priority service and paper applications will no longer be available after this date.

I’m not currently a priority service customer; I submit third party paper applications. What does this change mean for me?

As a third party, you’ll have two options in the new online service:

  1. Become a registered third party.
  2. Ask individuals to request their own criminal record check and then forward the results to you.

With faster and more consistent timeframes, the new online service will enable the Ministry to provide a timely and efficient criminal record check service to all our customers.

You will be able to access the new service anywhere at any time, and no paper request form will be needed.

Refer to ‘How do I register for the new online service?’ above for more information.

Will you still process third-party paper applications after the online service goes live on 3 May 2021?

No. Once the new online service goes live (scheduled for 3 May 2021), we’ll only be processing third party applications through the new online service. Any applications received on a paper form will be returned. The P.O Box will be closed from 30 April 2021.

Paper forms will only be available as an option for individuals requesting their own information.

Receive criminal record check results

How long will it take to receive the criminal record check results?

We aim to respond to all requests within three working days.

Can I get the results of my criminal record checks faster if we pay more?

No. With the new service, there will be one flat fee for all requests. We aim to respond to all requests within three working days.

Can I get my criminal record results validated?

The results you’ll receive from us will be in the form of an original PDF format document. There’s no requirement to get it validated.

Will I still receive the same criminal record check results document I currently receive?

Yes, there will be no change to the look of the results document.

Can I have a translated copy of the criminal record check results?

All results are provided in the English language. If you need them translated into another language, you’ll need to arrange this.

How long is a criminal record check valid for?

There is no set timeframe. Different organisations and employers have different requirements about how current they want your criminal conviction history check to be. There is no expiry date on the results you receive – only the date it was requested.

Can I ask an individual to send me the results of a criminal record check they’ve requested themselves?

Yes, an individual can request their own check - and once they receive the results, they can forward it to a third party. We aim to respond to all requests within three working days.

Does the applicant get a copy of their results?

Yes, they can ask to receive a copy by email when completing the form. They must provide an email address when entering their details on the form.

Third-party customer requirements and obligations

What criteria do I have to meet to become a registered third party with the new online service?

You just need to ensure that you meet the requirements of the new contract - including privacy, confidentiality, and security requirements.

You can view a copy of the new Contract for Online Delivery of Criminal Conviction Histories at the link below.

Contract for Online Delivery of Criminal Conviction Histories [PDF, 1012 KB]

I’m unable to meet the new contract requirements, what does this mean for me?

Unfortunately, if you can’t meet the new contract requirements, you won’t be eligible to become a registered third party.

You can ask individuals to request their own criminal record check and forward the results to you.

Do I need to provide a copy of the applicant’s ID?

You have to collect a copy of the applicant’s identification (ID) so you can verify that the applicant is who they say they are, but you don’t need to provide it to the Ministry when you submit a request.

However, you are required to keep your copy of the ID for a period of 90 days. After 90 days you must securely dispose of your copy of the ID.

For more information on your obligations when completing an ID check, refer to the Criminal Conviction History Request - Third party User Guide [PDF, 854 KB].

What types of ID can the applicant provide?

The applicant must provide an acceptable type of ID, such as NZ or Overseas Passport, NZ driving license or NZ firearms license.

The information provided in the request must match the ID provided.

The ID cannot be cancelled, defaced or expired for more than two years. For more information on completing an ID check, refer to the Criminal Conviction History Request - Third party User Guide.

Fees and invoicing

Why do third parties have to pay a fee?

There is no statutory requirement, mandate or policy requiring the Ministry to provide this service to third parties. We do so in the public interest.

Third parties using the service are primarily doing so as part of an employment recruitment process. We consider it’s reasonable to expect them to contribute to the cost of providing the service. Fees have been set to recover the actual and reasonable costs related to the service.

Can I choose whether I pay by credit card or receive invoices?

Yes, you can choose one of these two payment options. Note however, that we do reserve the right to change the payment method if needed – we’ll let you know if this happens.

Can I pay the monthly invoice by direct debit?

No, direct debit is not an option at this time.

When will I be charged?

If you choose to pay by credit card, it will be a ‘pay as you go system’ – you’ll pay for the number of requests you submit at the time of submission.

If you choose to be invoiced, you’ll receive an invoice from us at the beginning of each month for requests we processed the previous month.

My business has multiple sites, will there be a separate invoice for each site?

No, there will be only one invoice issued for each third party customer. However, if you have multiple sites the invoice will detail the volume of requests processed for each site.

 

Use the third-party online service

How do I use the online service?

The third-party customer user guides for the new online service can be found below:

What are the password requirements?

Your login password must be between 10-64 characters, and have at least four of the following:

  • a lowercase letter
  • an uppercase letter
  • a digit
  • a symbol.
How do I reset my login password?

Complete the following steps to reset your login password:

  • go to the landing page for Criminal Record Checks(external link)
  • click ‘Registered Third Party’
  • click ‘Forgot Your Password’
  • enter the email address that you registered with and click ‘Send verification code’
  • you will be sent an email with a verification code
  • enter the verification code into the login screen service
  • enter a new login password and click ‘Continue’ to save your new password.
Is there a limit on the number of criminal conviction history checks we can submit a day/week/month?

No, but we would ask you to let us know in advance if you’re intending to consistently submit more than 300-400 requests per day.

Do I need to send the applicant a link to complete their details in the form?

No - if you have selected the ‘email applicant’ method, the applicant will automatically be sent an email request with a link to complete their details.

Will the applicant need a username and password to log in to complete the form?

No - if you have selected the ‘email applicant’ method, the application must click on the link in the email sent to them. They will be redirected to complete their details in an online form.

You will be advised through your dashboard once they have completed the form.

Does the applicant need to sign the form online?

No, the applicant doesn’t need to sign the online form. However, they must click and accept authorisation.

Is the information required in the online form the same as the current paper forms?

Yes, there is no change to the information required to submit a request in the new online form.

Do I need to upload documents into the online form?

No, you are not required to upload documents into the online form.

However, you are required to keep your copy of the applicant’s ID for a period of 90 days. After 90 days you must securely dispose of your copy of the ID.

What happens after the applicant has completed their details in the form? Do they need to email the form back to us?

No, once they click ‘submit’ the request is added to your dashboard for you to complete the next steps of the request.

Can I track the progress of a form that has been sent to an applicant to complete?

Yes, you can track requests that have not been completed by the applicant from your dashboard.

Can I complete the request if the applicant is in the room with me?

Yes, you can either complete with them or complete the request on their behalf. There are three request methods to choose from:

  • Complete with the applicant – use this method if the applicant is with you and can enter their own details.
  • Email applicant – an email request will be sent to the applicant to complete their details.
  • Complete on the applicant’s behalf – use this method if you have obtained permission to enter the applicant’s details to enter the applicant’s details on their behalf.

For more information, refer to the Criminal Conviction History Request – Third-party User Guide [PDF, 854 KB]

Can more than one person be logged in to the online service at the same time?

Yes.

How long will the history of my criminal conviction history check requests be visible?

Your dashboard will default to the last 30 days; however, you can change this (up to a maximum of the last 90 days).

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