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Application for Police Clearance Certificate

Introduction / Procedures / Forms


South Africans that work, travel and reside abroad require Police Clearance Certificates for purposes such as court requirements, residence permission or securing employment.  Therefore the service from the South African Police Services (SAPS) – Criminal Record Centre is available to South Africans who require confirmation on their criminal status.
The application for a police clearance certificate is a personal matter that the applicant must attend to and the issuing of a Clearance Certificate is the sole responsibility of the SAPS - Criminal Record Centre in Pretoria.

In some countries Police Clearance Certificates are also known as “No Objection Certificates” or “Certificates of Character”.   


The South African Police Services (SAPS) is planning to outsource services for the police clearance certificates.  South African Diplomatic and Consular Representatives abroad will be informed of any new procedures in due course.  Until such time, the guidelines as per this chapter should be followed.


1. Customers must forward applications/requests directly to the SAPS - Criminal Record Centre in Pretoria.

2. If forwarded from abroad, the application may be forwarded via any reputable
courier company.  The courier company must be PREPAID to collect the documents from the Criminal Record Centre and return the documents to the sender. 

3. It is important to find out whether the requesting authority would need the police clearance certificate to be legalised.  It will save time and money to submit the original Police Clearance Certificate to the Department of Foreign Affairs – Legalisation Section before it is returned to the applicant.  Customers must specify this in their application to the SAPS - Criminal Record Centre.  Refer to http://www.dirco.gov.za/consular/legalisation.htm for further information regarding legalisation (authentication) of official documentation.

4.  The customer must present his/her green bar-coded Identity Document or valid passport at the South African Diplomatic and/or Consular Representatives, as proof of identification, when abroad.  Note:  The South African Diplomatic and/or Consular Representative abroad are only able to assist to take fingerprints.  The customer is responsible to forward the application/request for a Police Clearance Certificate directly to the SAPS – Criminal Record Centre in Pretoria.

5. There is no specific application form available from the SAPS, however the following information must be contained in the applicant’s letter/request addressed to the SAPS – Criminal Record Centre when submitting their application for a Police Clearance Certificate or refer to attached Annex 23B (Application for a Police Clearance Certificate) which has been designed to facilitate inquiries.  The following details are required:

a) Surname
b) Maiden name (if applicable, also specify in which surname the certificate
should to be issued)
c) Given names
d) Date of birth
e) Place of birth
f) South African ID number (if applicable)
g) Last residential address in South Africa
h) Last SA business / employer's address
i) Telephone number of the above (h)
j) Date
k) Signature
l) Mailing address in the country of application
m) Zip/Postal Code
n) Telephone number

6. An application, consisting of the written request (containing abovementioned information), full set of fingerprints, and copy of ID document/passport and proof of payment must be forwarded directly to the SAPS - Criminal Record Centre in Pretoria.  Fingerprints are done by your closest Police Station or nearest South African Diplomatic or Consular Representative, if you are abroad.

7. The application has to be accompanied by:

  • A fee of ZAR59-00 (either a South African bank guaranteed cheque, bankers draft, money order, or electronic payment into the South African Police Service account made payable to the South African Police Service, is acceptable).  Note:  It is advisable not to forward cash with the application.

  • A self-addressed and franked envelope if you want the application to be returned to you by post.

8. The application, copy of ID document/passport, original fingerprints and fee, should be forwarded by the applicant to:

The Head (Attention:  Police Clearance Certificates)
Criminal Record Center - SAPS
1st Floor, Room 14 Botongo Plaza West
271 Schoeman Street
Pretoria, 0001
Republic of South Africa

Tel. No's. (012) 393-3928  
Fax No. (012) 393-3909

E-mail:  crc-nameclear@saps.org.za / crc.client@saps.org.za or crc.clientserv.sec@saps.org.za

Website:  www.saps.gov.za – refer to information under the heading FAQ’s – Application for Police Clearance Certificates (PCC) for further information.

9. Office hours are from 07:30 to 16:00 (Monday to Friday).

10. The average time to render the service will take approximately 6 - 8 weeks from the day that the complete application is received at the Pretoria Criminal Record Centre (SAPS) until the Clearance Certificate is issued.


Annex 23B form (.doc)

To add value and improve consular services to the public, this consular site is constantly under construction. For consular related services, information and enquiries you are not able to find on this site, please contact the Chief Directorate Consular Services or the Webmaster.

Last updated: 15 September 2011
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