You are able to apply for your AccessNI check online using the Government’s NIDirect website www.nidirect.gov.uk/accessni.
For more information on how to apply for an Access NI please click here.
Update 17/11/2021 - ACCESSNI ID CHECKING – EXPIRED DOCUMENTATION
Further to previous advise issued to all Signatories on 19 November 2020 in relation to the acceptance of expired ID documentation please see the updated position as detailed below:-
UK Driving licenses
A UK driving license, which expired between 1 February and 31 December 2020, was automatically extended for 11 months. The 11-month extension period commenced from the date the license was due to expire. This means that no further expired driving licenses can be accepted after 30 November 2021.
AccessNI will continue to accept passports that are within 6 months of the expiry date.
Irish Driving Licenses
Some extensions for Irish driving license have come to an end, to check if an applicant’s driving license has expired the applicant/registered body should use the link below;
No extensions approved for expired passports.
Update 16/7/21 AccessNI circular 1/2021 - Identity checking - Updated guidance
AccessNI circular 1/2021 - Identity checking - Updated guidance
In light of Brexit, AccessNI has updated the identity checking guidance and list of acceptable documents which are now available to us on the updated PIN notification/ID validation form.
The key changes are as follows;
• The removal of EEA from the list of acceptable documents;
• A link to the Right to Work has been provided in the list of acceptable documents;
• An update to reviewing identification documents using live video link as detailed in the guidance document;
• The provision of a paragraph for applicants who have been adopted;
• The removal of the Annex providing a list of EEA countries;
• Added additional detail on the primary documents for applicants who are not UK or Irish nationals
• Signatories should note that the declaration on the AccessNI application now requires them to confirm (where the applicant is taking up a paid position) that the employing organisation has carried out a check to ensure the applicant has a right to work in the UK - an AccessNI application should not be submitted if the applicant has no ‘right to work’ in the UK
More information can be found:
July 2021 - Identity checking guidance for AccessNI applications
July 2021 – AccessNI list of acceptable documents for identity checking
ACCESS NI – ID CHECKING PROCEDURES - COVID 19
In light of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) and the need to reduce non-essential social contact, AccessNI has been reviewing their guidance and procedures on checking identity documentation.
AccessNI is content for you to introduce, as a temporary measure, the checking of ID documents using video link (eg Skype) or scanned documents on condition that
• The LS/CS has a copy of the ID documentation in front of them before they verify the documentation during a video link meeting.
• The copy ID documentation scanned or emailed to the Signatory is of a good, clear quality, and
• The applicant’s original documentation is verified and checked by a Manager on their 1st day of recruitment to ensure it matches the information on the scanned or emailed documentation used to process the AccessNI application.
The need to retain copies of ID documentation for 90 days remains.
The above change comes into immediate effect and will continue until such times as AccessNI deems otherwise.
We hope this is helpful and simplifies the process of ID checking during this difficult time.
Checks with EU member states - 12/04/2021
AccessNI currently runs a project to obtain any relevant information on EU nationals who originate from 12 countries. This additional check is restricted to where the applicant is seeking to work with children in regulated activity in Northern Ireland. From 12th April 2021, AccessNI has decided to extend these checks to nationals who come from 3 additional countries.
The full list of countries where checks are made include;
Czech Republic *
* Additional countries
ID Checking - Expired Documents - 19/11/2020
Due to Covid-19 and lockdown restrictions, there continues to be some delays in processing applications and renewal of passports and driving licences. In response to this AccessNI will temporarily continue to allow the following expired documentation to be accepted for AccessNI identity checking purposes:-
UK Driving licences
A UK driving licence which expires between 1 February and 31 December 2020 will automatically be extended for 11 months. The extension will start from the date a licence is due to expire. An expired driving licence can be accepted as a form of ID on condition that it falls within the period of extension.
**The extension does not apply to provisional driving licences that expire in this period. A provision driving licence can be renewed online.**
Irish Driving licences
An Irish driving licence which expired after 1 March will remain valid for an additional seven months. An expired driving licence can be accepted as a form of ID on condition that it falls within the period of extension.
In relation to learner permits, those permits which expired between 1 March and 30 June 2020 have all been extended by 4 months and permits expiring between 1 July and 31 October 2020, including those already extended, the validity period of these permits has also been extended by 4 months. Expired permits can be accepted as a form of ID on condition that it falls within the period of extension.
AccessNI will temporarily allow expired UK passports that are within 6 months of the expiry date to be accepted for AccessNI identity checking purposes.
Irish passports applications and renewals are still being processed and no extension has been approved for expired licences. Expired Irish passports cannot be accepted as a form of ID for AccessNI identity checking purposes.
AccessNI circular: 3/2020 - Revised Code of Practice
Revised Code of Practice 3/2020
AccessNI Newsletter 34: Summer 2020
AccessNI Newsletter 34: Summer 2020
The newsletter contains information on the following:
• Applicant survey
• Home-based positions – AccessNI enhanced disclosure e-application forms
• On-line teaching
• ID checking during COVID-19
• Barred list checks
• Activating and Managing NIDA accounts
• Positions applied for
• AccessNI Registered/Responsible Body review
• Referral to Disclosure and Barring Service
• Independent Monitor Annual Report
Home Based Positions – AccessNI Enhanced Disclosure E-Application Forms - 04/09/2020
On the AccessNI enhanced disclosure e-application form, the Registered Body is asked the question:-
Will the work be carried out at the home of the applicant? Yes or No
Where the role being applied for, will always be carried out at the home address of the applicant (this is the individual applying for the disclosure certificate) the Registered Body should ‘X’ the ‘Yes’ box. A prime example of a home-based position is ‘Kinship Foster Carer’ where a child or young person will be cared for in the applicant’s own home.
Where the role being applied for will be carried out at a client’s home address – such as ‘Domiciliary Care Workers’ this is not a home-based position and at the question:-
Will the work be carried out at the home of the applicant? The Registered Body should ‘X’ the ‘No’ box.
AccessNI applications for home-based positions are always referred to Police Service Northern Ireland to allow them to check their records for any relevant information in relation to 3rd parties at the applicant’s address. This will make the processing time for these applications slightly longer.
Due to the recent COVID-19 pandemic many roles are temporarily being conducted from the applicant’s home address but this does not mean they are home-based positions. Where the role would usually be conducted from a work address this is not a home based position and the question:-
Will the work be carried out at the home of the applicant? Should be answered ‘No’.
COVID-19: Access NI - Teaching, Training, Instruction Children Online
Working practices arising from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic have been far reaching, and many changes have had to be introduced in double quick time in order to ensure continuity of many services.
One such change is the use of on-line streaming to deliver teaching, training, instruction, etc to children.
Please note that this type of on-line activity with children is regarded as Regulated Activity if it is carried out frequently (once per week or 4+ times in a 30 day period) and, as such, an Enhanced disclosure with a check of the children’s barred list should be sought.
COVID- 19 Contingency Plan
Coronavirus Outbreak - AccessNI Contingency Plan
Circular 2/2020 – Criminal Records Filtering Scheme
Public Services Card as ID Document
We have received further clarification on the use of the Public Services Card (Ireland) as an acceptable ID document. As AccessNI is not regarded as a ‘Specified Body’ under Schedule 5 of the Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005 we can no longer include this card in our Group 2B documentation.
AccessNI digital certificates are designed to be used and shared electronically. They incorporate a watermark with the wording ***VALID CERTIFICATE – UNLESS PRINTED*** written diagonally across the certificate. AccessNI has included this watermark as a fraud prevention measure in recognition that a digital certificate is relatively easy to replicate on a word document. It is for this reason it is absolutely essential that Signatories do not accept a paper version of the digital certificate – Signatories should instead ask the applicant to share their digital certificate electronically.
Cease of Paper Applications
AccessNI will be removing paper applications from the NIdirect website on 1 July 2019, and we will cease to accept paper applications from 1 October 2019.
We strongly advise all applicants to apply online themselves rather than utilising a third party such as your club verification officer.
Access NI Fees. From 1 April 2019, Access Ni fees will change. Please see Circular 1/2019 for specific detail.
pdf Cicular 1/2019 (214 KB)
Access NI Update
With effect from February 2019, Access NI will be implementing a phased approach to remove old incomplete applications. All applicants, verifiers and Counter Signatories should be aware that any application created will only have a shelf life of 90 days. If after 90 days, the application has not been submitted to Access NI, then it will automatically be deleted and the applicant will have to start the process again.
Immediate action required - New Electronic Certificates and NICS Identity Assurance (NIDA) Accounts
Please be advised that with effect from 17th July 2018, AccessNI will issue electronic certificates. All applications from that date will also require the applicant to create a NICS Identity Assurance (NIDA) account. Further direction and guidance can be found here, Circular 3/2018 and AccessNI Guide to Identity Checking