Police clearance certificates

Sometimes when you apply to travel to or live in another country you might be asked for a police clearance certificate. This can also be called a police record, police file, police check, penal check or criminal check.

These are the same as your criminal record (or criminal conviction history). There is no such document as a police clearance certificate in New Zealand.

Police vetting

Organisations providing services to vulnerable people (this includes children, older people and people with special needs) can ask the New Zealand Police to vet (external link) (check) people who want to work or volunteer for them.

The difference between a Ministry of Justice criminal record check and police vetting (external link) is that the criminal record check only covers convictions. As well as your criminal record, police vetting can also include information on any contact you’ve had with the police.

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