Many South Africans plan to emigrate or find jobs overseas. If that’s the case, you may need a Visa or have to complete emigration paperwork. As part of your paperwork, you will need to provide a police clearance certificate. Even if you don’t plan to work or settle abroad, many employers also require police clearance certificates to be provided as part of the job application. Therefore, if you find yourself in this predicament, following this easy guide on how to get a police clearance certificate in South Africa is your best bet.
What is a Police Clearance Certificate?
The purpose of a police clearance certificate is to show that you don’t have any record of criminal convictions. The document verifies your criminal status – or lack thereof – and proves that you are a sound character. Furthermore, this certificate can also be referred to as a Certificate of Good Conduct, depending on the country you’re emigrating to or the job you’re seeking.
There isn’t any good substitute for a police clearance certificate, so if you need to provide one for a job offer or travel abroad, it’s better to apply for one ASAP to avoid any delays in the process.
How To Get a Police Clearance Certificate at a Police Station
The most commonly used method to get your police clearance certificate is to go to your nearest police station and initiate the process. Both the in-person method and the online method have the same processing time, so you should use the method that best suits your circumstances.
Visit Your Local Police Station
Visit a police station in your vicinity. Not only will this police station send your application for your PCC to the relevant department, but you will also pick up your PCC from this police station. Before you visit the police station, you should consider downloading the PCC application form; that way, you won’t delay the process if the station doesn’t have any.
Ask For The 91A Form.
When you’re at the police station, request a 91A form and have your fingerprints taken on the form after filling in your details.
Pay The Application Fee
You will also be required to pay a non-refundable R150 fee. Be sure you receive proof of payment, as this will need to be attached to the application form.
You may also need to pay additional fees for postage. These fees will also not be refunded.
How To Apply For a Police Clearance Certificate Online
There isn’t exactly an easy way to apply for a PCC online. Instead, it’s a mix of visiting your local police station and mailing a letter to the Criminal Record and Crime Scene Management. Nevertheless, it gives you greater control of the process and ensures your documentation reaches its destination. So, depending on how reliable your local police station is, you may want to consider this route.
Complete an Application Form
Before visiting your local police station, you can print the Police Clearance Certificate application form. This form will require you to fill in some of your details, including your ID number, name and surname and other particulars.
The second half of the application form is to be filled in by the station commander or an officer at the police station.
Pay The Fee
Using this DIY method, you can pay the non-refundable R150 fee for a police clearance certificate directly to SAPS via EFT. Use the payment details below when making payment:
Account Type: Cheque
Account Number: 4054522787
Branch Code: 632005
Swift Code: ABSAZAJJXXX.
Reference Number: The letters “PCC” followed by your first name and middle name initials and surname.
You can then attach your proof of payment to the application form.
Get a 91A Form
Once you are in possession of your completed application form, visit a police station to pick up a 91A form and have your fingerprints taken. During this time, you can also ask that the commander of the police station fill in their particulars in the spaces as required.
Send Your Documentation To The PCC Postal Address
After completing the aforementioned process, you will be required to post your documentation to the following address:
The Head: Criminal Record and Crime Scene Management (For attention: Police Clearance Certificates)
South African Police Service
Private Bag X308
Once your application is received, you will get an SMS confirming receipt in addition to a reference number, which you can use to query the status of your police clearance certificate.
How To Check The Status of Your Police Clearance Certificate
Once you’ve submitted all your documentation, you can check the status of your certificate online. To do that, follow the 2-step process below:
Step 1: Visit The SAPS Portal
You’ll need to visit the PCC Portal, which you can do by clicking here. Currently, they are experiencing a backlog with the processing of clearance certificates, so the status of the certificate may not be as far along as initially forecasted.
Step 2: Insert Your Reference Number or Details
When you’re on the portal, you’ll need to insert either a reference number, also known as an enquiry number. When you’re inserting the number, do not enter the slashes.
Afterwards, you’ll need to enter your South African ID number. If you are not a South African citizen, you can also enter your DOB along with your surname.
Once you’ve inserted your reference number and details, click submit at the bottom of the screen. You should be redirected to a page that will reveal the most recent details regarding the status of your PCC.
Should You Use a Third-Party To Get a Police Clearance Certificate?
Several private companies will help you get your police clearance certificate. However, these are more for convenience, so you don’t have to spend as much time following up. With most of these companies, you will still need to visit a police station to get your fingerprints taken, and these third parties can’t guarantee that your certificate application is processed faster.
Nevertheless, if you’re using a company for other emigration services, they may offer police clearance certificates as part of the package. In that case, you can use those services instead of doing them yourself.
If you have any further questions regarding how to get a police clearance certificate, you can also contact Police Clearance Certificate Offices on 012 393 3928 or email email@example.com.