AccessNI continues to improve processing times

Date published: 17 November 2015

Justice Minister David Ford has told the Assembly that the introduction of on-line applications for AccessNI certificates in April has significantly improved turnaround times.

Responding to an Assembly question David Ford said: “The average time to process an enhanced AccessNI check has fallen from 19 days in 2013/14 to eight days on average in the first six months of this year.

“With the introduction in April of on-line applications, there have been significant improvements in the AccessNI turnaround times. In addition, the PSNI has recently reviewed and improved the processes for dealing with those enhanced checks referred to them. This has resulted in a 70% reduction in the backlog of enhanced AccessNI checks with police over the past three months.

“There will always be some cases which take longer to consider to ensure children and vulnerable adults can be protected, but this is less than 2% of applications received.”

AccessNI is a branch within the Department of Justice which was established in April 2008. Its job is to supply certificates that show whether people who want to work in certain types of jobs, for example with children and or vulnerable adults, have a criminal record or if other important information is known about them which ought to be disclosed. This enables employers and those running volunteer organisations to make safer recruitment decisions.

AccessNI operates within Part V of the Police Act 1997 and issues three types of disclosure, Basic, Standard and Enhanced. Enhanced can include a check of those barred from working with children or adults.


Notes to editors: 

  1. View the turnaround times here
  2. All media enquiries should be directed to the Department of Justice Press Office on 028 9052 6444. Out of office hours please contact the duty press officer via pager number 07699 715440 and your call will be returned.

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