Justice Minister sets new targets for Accessni clearance times

Date published: 01 July 2016

Justice Minister, Claire Sugden MLA today announced new targets for AccessNI to process applications.

The new targets have been set to reflect increased capability for quicker turnaround times due to improvements in the application process, including the introduction of the on-line applications in 2015 and system improvements made by the PSNI.

The revised targets will aim for both a reduction in the time taken for checks and an increase in the percentage of cases in which cases are delivered within the new timescales.

Minister Sugden said “I welcome the significant improvements in turnaround times over the past year for processing the vast majority of applications.  Today, I am amending targets which strive to increase the number of applications processed in shorter times even further. These new targets are the most demanding for any UK disclosure agency, but I am confident that AccessNI can meet them.

I am committed to ensuring that people are able to take up employment as quickly as possible, however our priority will always be the protection of vulnerable members of our community. Therefore we must balance timely applications with the need for thorough checks of applicants.  This is vital to ensure that organisations have all the information they require to make informed and safe recruitment decisions.” 


Notes to editors: 

AccessNI processes three types of check, basic, standard and enhanced. The targets for all types of check made on-line and where they are countersigned by an organisation registered with AccessNI have been amended to ensure that more certificates are returned in shorter periods of time.

A table setting out the new AccessNI targets compared to the previous targets are below.  By comparison, currently the target in the Disclosure and Barring Service is to issue 95% of all standard and enhanced applications within 8 weeks.


                              Previous target Proposed Target
   Issue 95% of all basic checks in 14 days                                                       Issue 99% of basic checks made online and countersigned by Responsible bodies, within 7 days

Issue 95% of basics made on-line directly by citizens within 14 days.


Issue 95% of all standard checks within 14 days                        

Issue 99% of all standard checks made on-line within 7 days.

Issue 70%  of all enhanced checks within 14 days       

Issue 90% of all enhanced checks within 28 days              

Issue 70% of all enhanced checks made on line  within 10 days

Issue 95% of all enhanced checks made on line within 21 days

Issue 98% of all enhanced checks made on line within 28 days.



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