How to apply for a police clearance certificate

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Here’s how to get clearance on your criminal status.

Working abroad is not as simple as purchasing a plane ticket; documentation such as a police clearance certificate is needed to prove to the employer how trustworthy their foreign employees are.

In South Africa, the police are the sole authority responsible for issuing a clearance certificate. Police will issue a clearance certificate regardless of any criminal offences against the applicant, Randfontein Herald reports.

What police need to start the process:

• A full set of fingerprints;

• A full name and surname;

• Date and place of birth and;

• A copy of the applicant’s identity document (ID) as well as their actual ID as proof of identity.

Where to apply:

• At the applicant’s local police station which will escalate it to the South African Police Service’s Criminal Record Centre (CRC) in Pretoria which is solely responsible for issuing clearance certificates.

• Applicants can also deliver their completed application to the Head of the South African Criminal Record Centre, Private Bag X309, Pretoria, Gauteng, South Africa, 0001.

• It can also be delivered by courier to the Head of the South African Criminal Record Centre, Bothongo Plaza West at the Criminal Record Centre’s CSC which is in room 14, first floor located on 271 Baard Steet Pretoria.

Where to apply if abroad:

• At any police station in the specific country or at a South African embassy.

How will the applicant know when it’s finalised?

• Should the applicant supply a cell phone number on the application, the applicant will receive an SMS notification.

• He or she can follow-up to determine when the clearance certificate will be finalised at the CRC.

How long does the process take:

• On average the process takes approximately 14 working days from the day the application is received by the CRC.


• R96 which is payable by bank-guaranteed cheque, banker’s draft or electronic payment into the SAPS account: ABSA cheque account number: 4054522787, branch code: 632005, swift code: ABSA ZAJJ.

Can you apply during any day of the week:

• New applications may be handed in and completed certificates may be collected seven days a week.


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