Getting the UK equivalent of a Strafregisterauszug

For my citizenship application I have had to have a UK police record done – and I think it is worth mentioning to those going down the same road, that although it is recommended to have your National Insurance number to hand (for those who may not have needed the number in approaching two decades, and are not aware of it any more, the process to get a new card can take some time!), but if you do not have it, you can still get through the process.

The online application through the ACRO  (formerly the ACPO) is pretty straightforward, provided that you have the necessary information to hand, or access to a scanner!

For the police record I needed two proofs of my latest address (I used a mobile phone bill and a credit card bill – both of which I was able to upload as PDFs). I had to supply my addresses for the last 10 years (i.e. here in Austria) as well as my last address in the UK (my parents’ address). In addition I had to supply my passport details and upload the photo pages of my passport, and a recent passport photo. The only restriction appears to be on size – most uploads are capped at 2 Mb. There is also a box to be ticked if you have lived in Scotland – as this requires another criminal record database to be checked. Make sure you are getting the “Police Certificate for Immigration Purposes” as this is what the authorities recognise.

There are various options in terms of speed of processing time and method of postage of your police record – if you need a two day service with couriering to mainland Europe, you’ll be looking at approaching £130 (approx. € 150). Once you have the police record, which comes with a covering letter that explains about whether your record is marked as “no trace” (i.e. a clean record), no live trace (i.e. criminal record information is held on their register, but has been “stepped down” i.e. records may be retained, but not published as being current). It should be mentioned that “no live trace” might mean that you have to provide/gain information about the substance behind this status, which can incur costs, but at the same time doing so is advised particularly for immigration purposes. The police certificate for immigration purposes can be delivered to your home address, as well as to an alternative delivery address (e.g. place of work).

If you intend to naturalise in Austria and have spent more than eight months in another country, you will be required to also have police records done for those countries – in my wife’s case, having studied in the USA , she had to have an FBI police record statement, which had a processing time of around three months, and needed to have fingerprints done (cost approx. €50). In Vienna this is done at the Landespolizeidirektion (LPD) in the 9th district, on Berggasse close to the Rossauer Kaserne.

9 Replies to “Getting the UK equivalent of a Strafregisterauszug”

  1. Hi Brit_In_Wien,

    Thanks for the great information. Did you have to translate the proof of address into english? I assume the bills were in German.

    1. Didn’t translate it – ultimately they were not interested in anything other than the address tying up with the one I filled in on the form.

  2. Thanks for the info. Was it necessary to get the UK Police Certificate translated into german for the naturalization process? Does this count as an International Certiicate i.e. does not need to be translated). Thanks

    1. Thanks for the comment. I didn’t need a translation – they understood or had reference documents in their systems that explained adequately enough that I had a clean record. Hope that helps.

      1. OK, that’s good to know. I spoke to the MA35 today and they were able to offer me an appointment to hand in all the paper work on Friday i.e. much earlier than expected, so I’m just getting all my paperwork ordered.
        One last thing… they ask for “alle bisherige Visa und Aufenthaltstitel (eventuell in alten Reisepässen) für Österreich und alle anderen Staaten…) Does this mean for countries that I have lived in or all those that I may have visited at some time, even just for tourism or work? Surely they can only be interested in visas for countries I lived it. I guess that tourist visas are not relevant here…

        1. Effectively they look at your last 20 years. The visas needed are for residency/work visas rather than tourist visas. And likely if anything to only be used to try to prove that your residence here has not been deemed to have been interrupted.

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