How to obtain a Police Clearance for South Africa faster

How to obtain a Police Clearance for South Africa faster

The average lead time for getting a PCC for South Africa is now 2 to 3 months – without system crashes at SAPS. Doing it from overseas can take even longer, and this does not even take into account mistakes that are made on certificates around 5-10% of the time.

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Obtaining a Police Clearance Certificate (PCC) can be a tedious and time-consuming process, but working through a professional document agency such as can help you obtain your vital PCC on time when you need it most.

What exactly is a PCC?

A South African Police Clearance Certificate is a document verifying that a background check has been conducted, enumerating any criminal records an individual might have.

As you can see in this example PCC, these certificates indicate whether or not a person has any criminal record in South Africa. Also known as an Arrest Record, Certificate of Good Conduct and Criminal Record, this document is an A4 certificate issued as a result of a background check by SAPS, declaring that a criminal record is either present or absent.

Everything important you need to know about a criminal record

All South African citizens, and any foreigner, can request a Police Clearance Certificate to be issued, regardless of whether or not they currently reside in the country. Clearance certificates are processed and issued by the SAPS Criminal Records Centre (CRC), located in Pretoria.

How do I apply for a PCC?

When applying for a South African Police Clearance Certificate, you will need to supply an original set of complete fingerprints (along with proof of your identity) on a completed SAPS Police Clearance application form.

If you apply from within South Africa, a SAPS official or police officer will assist you with the completion of the fingerprint form. However, this does not mean that you have to visit a police station to complete the fingerprint form.

In fact, you can have your fingerprints taken anywhere and have them verified/stamped by any lawyer or commissioner of oaths, who confirms that the fingerprints are yours.

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In the event that you need to urgently obtain a police clearance certificate, you can make use of, and your application documents will be handled directly with the Pretoria Criminal Records Centre (CRC) for a faster result.

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How long does it take to obtain a PCC?

Although there is a lot of misleading information on the internet stating that the process of applying for and obtaining a PCC is easy to do on your own, this can have detrimental outcomes as far as timing is concerned.

Applying for a Police Clearance Certificate in person may see your certificate take three months (if in SA) and up to six months (if abroad) to be issued. The Criminal Records Centre also states that processing times vary depending on the date you first submitted your application.

How to get your criminal record check online in South Africa

Professional document agencies, like, can help you obtain your Police Clearance Certificate between 5 and 30 working days of applying (excluding courier times).

What is the validity of a Police Clearance Certificate?

Depending on the country or authority requesting your PCC, the validity of your certificate varies.

It is crucial to inspect the date stamp on the Police Clearance Certificate since the document is only valid for a certain period since the date of issuance.

While some countries see the document as valid for up to six months from the date it was issued, there are some countries such as Spain, which only hold it valid for three months, even if it has been apostilled.

READ ALSO: Corruption is rampant in SA judiciary, according to attorney

Get your South African PCC faster has completed thousands of client instructions regarding South African Police Clearance Certificates. Simply couriering your application documents to them can see you obtain your police clearance for South Africa in as little as 5 working days.

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