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Garda Confidential No.: 1 800 666 111
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Frequently Asked Questions

Garda Vetting/Data Protection

Page Description Short 
Who conducts Garda Vetting? Who conducts Garda Vetting?
Is Garda Vetting conducted for all organisations? Is Garda Vetting conducted for all organisations?
Can vetting be conducted on an individual basis? Can vetting be conducted on an individual basis?
What category of employee is vetting conducted for? What category of employee is vetting conducted for?
Do Garda Stations carry out vetting? Do Garda Stations carry out vetting?
Is there a fee for Garda Vetting? Is there a fee for Garda Vetting?
What details are disclosed as a result of Garda Vetting? What details are disclosed as a result of Garda Vetting?
What is the procedure for seeking Garda Vetting for an organisation? What is the procedure for seeking Garda Vetting for an organisation?
What is the Garda Vetting Procedure for personnel who are subject to Garda Vetting? What is the Garda Vetting Procedure for personnel who are subject to Garda Vetting?
Does the Garda Central Vetting Unit make decisions in respect of applicants looking for employment in registered organisations? Does the Garda Central Vetting Unit make decisions in respect of applicants looking for employment in registered organisations?
Has the Garda Central Vetting Unit any input into any decisions made in respect of the suitability of an applicant for a position within a registered organisation? Has the Garda Central Vetting Unit any input into any decisions made in respect of the suitability of an applicant for a position within a registered organisation?
Who issues a Police Certificate? Who issues a Police Certificate?
Is there a fee for a Police Certificate? Is there a fee for a Police Certificate?
For what purpose are Police Certificates issued? For what purpose are Police Certificates issued?
How do I apply for a Police Certificate? How do I apply for a Police Certificate?
Have I the right to access personal data about me held by An Garda Síochána? Have I the right to access personal data about me held by An Garda Síochána?
What is the procedure for seeking access to my personal data? What is the procedure for seeking access to my personal data?
Is there a fee for accessing my personal data? Is there a fee for accessing my personal data?
What can a Data Protection disclosure be used for? What can a Data Protection disclosure be used for?
Can a Data Protection disclosure be construed as Proof of No Convictions, a Police Certificate, a Garda Reference or Garda Vetting? Can a Data Protection disclosure be construed as Proof of No Convictions, a Police Certificate, a Garda Reference or Garda Vetting?
My question was not answered here. How can I contact the Garda Vetting Unit? My question was not answered here. How can I contact the Garda Vetting Unit?
Garda Vetting/Data Protection/Police Certificates Flow Chart Garda Vetting/Data Protection/Police Certificates Flow Chart
Is it possible to fast-track or speed up my vetting application? Is it possible to fast-track or speed up my vetting application?
Does the Freedom of Information Act apply to An Garda Siochana? Does the Freedom of Information Act apply to An Garda Siochana?
Does the Freedom of Information apply to vetting? Does the Freedom of Information apply to vetting?
Can information on me be disclosed to a potential employer without my knowledge or permission? Can information on me be disclosed to a potential employer without my knowledge or permission?
What is the administrative filter? What is the administrative filter?
What is the purpose of this administrative filter? What is the purpose of this administrative filter?
What type of convictions will not be disclosed due to the administrative filter? What type of convictions will not be disclosed due to the administrative filter?
When did the administrative filter commence? When did the administrative filter commence?
What is a Police Certificate? What is a Police Certificate?

 

Page Description Short 
Who conducts Garda Vetting?
Who conducts Garda Vetting?

Garda Vetting is carried out by the Garda Central Vetting Unit which is based in Thurles, Co. Tipperary. The Unit primarily deals with requests from organisations that have been registered with it to vet prospective employees.

 

The Unit also deals with requests from individuals looking for information regarding personal information relating to themselves held by An Garda Síochána subject to the provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998/2003.

 

The Unit does not issue Police Certificates of Character.

Is Garda Vetting conducted for all organisations?
Is Garda Vetting conducted for all organisations?
No - the Garda Vetting Unit only conducts vetting for organisations that have registered with it.
Can vetting be conducted on an individual basis?
Can vetting be conducted on an individual basis?
No - Garda Vetting is conducted only on behalf of registered organisations and is not conducted for individual persons on a personal basis.
What category of employee is vetting conducted for?
What category of employee is vetting conducted for?

Garda vetting is conducted in respect of personnel working in a full-time, part-time, and voluntary or student placement capacity in a position in a registered organisation, through which they have unsupervised access to children and/or vulnerable adults. 

Do Garda Stations carry out vetting?
Do Garda Stations carry out vetting?

No - the Garda Central Vetting Unit is the single point of contact in An Garda Síochána to conduct Garda Vetting.

Is there a fee for Garda Vetting?
Is there a fee for Garda Vetting?

There is no fee.

What details are disclosed as a result of Garda Vetting?
What details are disclosed as a result of Garda Vetting?

The following may be disclosed to the authorised liaison person in the registered organisation:

  • Details of all convictions not subject to the administrative filter.
  • Details of all cases pending.
  • Non convictions will be considered for disclosure where the circumstances of an offence gives rise to a bona fide concern that the person concerned may harm a child or vulnerable person.
What is the procedure for seeking Garda Vetting for an organisation?
What is the procedure for seeking Garda Vetting for an organisation?

If you are an organisation seeking Garda Vetting for your personnel, the Chief Executive Officer or Managing Director of the organisation should write to the Garda Central Vetting Unit providing the following details:-

  • A description of the service provided by the organisation
  • The approximate number of personnel requiring vetting per annum
  • The level of substantial unsupervised access personnel will have to children and/or vulnerable adults
  • Any additional relevant information e.g. organisational literature orcertificates of registration in respect of charitable status

On receipt of this information, the Garda Central Vetting Unit will respond directly to the applicant organisation.

 

 If you are an individual who has been requested by an organisation to provide Garda Vetting you should advise the organisation of the above procedure.

What is the Garda Vetting Procedure for personnel who are subject to Garda Vetting?
What is the Garda Vetting Procedure for personnel who are subject to Garda Vetting?

The procedure is as follows:-

  • Personnel who are subject to Garda Vetting will receive a Garda Vetting Application Form from the registered organisation where they are seeking a position.
  • The applicant completes the application form and returns it to the Organisation. He or she must sign the form, thereby providing authorisation for the Garda Vetting process.
  • An authorised liaison person in the registered organisation sends the form on to the Garda Central Vetting Unit. 
  • Garda Vetting checks on the applicant are carried out following receipt of the application form at the Garda Central Vetting Unit.
  • As a result of these checks a Garda Vetting disclosure is issued directly to the authorised liaison person in the registered organisation.
  • An individual vetting subject may obtain a copy of their Garda vetting disclosure from the authorised liaison person in the registered organisation to whom it was issued.

Garda Vetting will only be conducted, and relevant disclosure will only be issued to an authorised liaison person within a registered organisation for Garda Vetting, predicated on the written authorisation of an individual vetting subject to do so in a Garda Vetting application form. 

Does the Garda Central Vetting Unit make decisions in respect of applicants looking for employment in registered organisations?
Does the Garda Central Vetting Unit make decisions in respect of applicants looking for employment in registered organisations?

All decisions in respect of the suitability of applicants for positions in registered organisations for Garda vetting are the sole responsibility of the registered organisation concerned.

Has the Garda Central Vetting Unit any input into any decisions made in respect of the suitability of an applicant for a position within a registered organisation?
Has the Garda Central Vetting Unit any input into any decisions made in respect of the suitability of an applicant for a position within a registered organisation?

The Garda Central Vetting Unit has no input into any decision made in any registered organisation in respect of the suitability of an applicant for a position within such an organisation.

Who issues a Police Certificate?
Who issues a Police Certificate?

A Police Certificate is issued by the Superintendent in the District where the relevant applicant resides, or formerly resided, in the Republic of Ireland. 

Is there a fee for a Police Certificate?
Is there a fee for a Police Certificate?

The certificate is issued free of charge.

For what purpose are Police Certificates issued?
For what purpose are Police Certificates issued?

Police Certificates are issued for the following purposes:-

  • Foreign Consular Authorities
  • Foreign Visas
  • Establishing a Business in other EU States
How do I apply for a Police Certificate?
How do I apply for a Police Certificate?

Applicants for Police Certificates for these purposes should make an application in writing to the Superintendent in charge of the district wherein they reside, or formerly resided, in the Republic of Ireland. Please go to our Station Directory to find out who your District Superintendent is.

Your application in writing should include the following:

  • Your full name as on your birth certificate including your maiden name if applicable
  • Your date and place of birth (or a copy of your birth certificate)
  • Your current address
  • All addresses at which you have lived at in Ireland and when you lived there
  • The place and purpose for which you require the Certificate


You should also include with your application:

  • A copy of your passport, driving license or similar for identification purposes
  • A stamped, self addressed envelope


Your application will take approximately three weeks to process.

Have I the right to access personal data about me held by An Garda Síochána?
Have I the right to access personal data about me held by An Garda Síochána?

Yes, subject to the provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998/2003, every individual has a right to access personal data about him or her held by An Garda Síochána.

What is the procedure for seeking access to my personal data?
What is the procedure for seeking access to my personal data?

An individual seeking access to their information should complete a Data Protection Access Request form - F20 and return it with relevant enclosures to the Garda Criminal Records Office, Racecourse Road, Thurles, Co. Tipperary.

Is there a fee for accessing my personal data?
Is there a fee for accessing my personal data?

Yes, there is a fee of €6.35. All cheques/bank drafts should be made payable to “Accountant, Department of Justice”.

What can a Data Protection disclosure be used for?
What can a Data Protection disclosure be used for?

A Data Protection disclosure is issued directly to the applicant in person for their own personal use.

Can a Data Protection disclosure be construed as Proof of No Convictions, a Police Certificate, a Garda Reference or Garda Vetting?
Can a Data Protection disclosure be construed as Proof of No Convictions, a Police Certificate, a Garda Reference or Garda Vetting?

No, a Data Protection disclosure cannot be construed as Proof of No Convictions, a Police Certificate, a Garda Reference or Garda Vetting. 

My question was not answered here. How can I contact the Garda Vetting Unit?
My question was not answered here. How can I contact the Garda Vetting Unit?

The Unit can be contacted at:-

Garda Central Vetting Unit/Garda Criminal Records Office
Racecourse Road
Thurles
Co. Tipperary

Tel: Lo-Call 1890 488 488/00353 504 27300

Office Hours: 9am-5pm Monday – Friday

Garda Vetting/Data Protection/Police Certificates Flow Chart
Garda Vetting/Data Protection/Police Certificates Flow Chart

Police Certificates                                Data Protection                         Garda Vetting  

Who can apply?                                     Individual                                   Register  
                                                                                                           Employer

Issued to:                                             Individual                                    Register  
                                                                                                           Employer

Apply to:                                  Local District Officer                        Garda Central Vetting Unit/
                                                                                                        Garda Criminal Records         
                                               See Station Directory                            Racecouse Road,
                                               for your local Station                             Thurles, 
                                                                                                        Co Tipperary
                                                                                                        Lo-Call 1890 488 488

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Tel:

Is it possible to fast-track or speed up my vetting application?
Is it possible to fast-track or speed up my vetting application?

No. In order to observe equity and fairness in respect of all applicants for Garda Vetting, standard processing procedures are such that applications are processed in chronological order, from the date of receipt at the Central Vetting Unit.

All organisations registered for Garda Vetting are aware of the processing timeframes for the receipt of Garda vettings and have been advised to factor this into their recruitment and selection process.

Does the Freedom of Information Act apply to An Garda Siochana?
Does the Freedom of Information Act apply to An Garda Siochana?

An Garda Siochana is not a prescribed body under the Freedom of Information Act (Prescribed Bodies) Regulations 2006. In this regard Statutory Instrument No. 297 of 2006 refers.  This being the case the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 1997/2003 do not apply to An Garda Siochana; and, thus, requests under the Freedom of Information Act 1997/2003 cannot be acceded to.

Does the Freedom of Information apply to vetting?
Does the Freedom of Information apply to vetting?

An Garda Siochana is not a prescribed body under the Freedom of Information Act (Prescribed Bodies) Regulations 2006. In this regard Statutory Instrument No. 297 of 2006 refers.  This being the case the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 1997/2003 do not apply to An Garda Siochana; and, thus, requests under the Freedom of Information Act 1997/2003 cannot be acceded to.

Can information on me be disclosed to a potential employer without my knowledge or permission?
Can information on me be disclosed to a potential employer without my knowledge or permission?
No. Standard policy in place with registered organisations for Garda Vetting is that the vetting subject gives written permission, on a Garda Vetting application form, for An Garda Síochána to disclose details of all prosecutions, successful or not, pending or completed and / or convictions, recorded in the State or elsewhere in respect of them to the registered organisation.
What is the administrative filter?
What is the administrative filter?
The administrative filter is a new procedure being applied by the Garda Central Vetting Unit (GCVU) to allow certain minor convictions over 7 years old to be removed from disclosures. 
What is the purpose of this administrative filter?
What is the purpose of this administrative filter?
The purpose of this filter is to allow a more balanced, relevant and proportionate approach to Garda Vetting, pending the commencement of the National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Act 2012. (commencement date to be confirmed).
What type of convictions will not be disclosed due to the administrative filter?
What type of convictions will not be disclosed due to the administrative filter?
District court convictions for motoring offences over 7 years old.

Minor public order offences over 7 years old.

Other minor district court convictions over 7 years old where the person has one such offence only (excluding motoring and public order offences over 7 years old).
When did the administrative filter commence?
When did the administrative filter commence?
On March 31st 2014 the Minister for Justice and Equality introduced the administrative filter to be applied to all Garda Vetting applications from that date.
What is a Police Certificate?
What is a Police Certificate?
A Police Certificate is a certificate in respect of an individual issued by the Gardaí in certain circumstances.  The certificate, which is normally valid for one year, states your name, address, date of birth and also includes information about whether or not you have a criminal record.