As has already been signalled, later this year, Police will begin charging a fee to help recover the cost of the vetting service it provides. The purpose of this communication from Bruce Mackay, Manager of the Police Vetting Service, is simply to make you aware of the coming changes and provide as much time as possible for you to begin planning for this.

The Policing (Cost Recovery) Amendment Act 2016 was passed by Parliament in November 2016. This legislation allows for Police to recover the costs associated with some services it provides that benefit other agencies.

The demand for vetting services in recent years has grown significantly, creating added costs for Police. While there will be some exceptions, some agencies will be required to pay a small fee per request to help Police meet these costs. This will enable us to consistently meet our 20 working day service level by appropriately resourcing the group to cope with increased levels of demand.

Charging a fee for vetting services brings New Zealand Police into line with other New Zealand government agencies and other Police services worldwide. These agencies typically charge significantly more for these services.

What do I need to do? There is no need for you to do anything yet, other than be aware of the changes. Please do not contact us yet, as we are still working through the detail and more information will be made available to you over the coming few months.

When will these fees apply from? While the start date of these fees has not been finalised, it is expected to be no sooner than 1 July 2017. We will continue to keep you informed about when this will occur.

What will the fees be? Our fee will be $8.50 + GST for each New Zealand vetting request – unless a fee exemption or fee waiver applies. There will be no change in fees charged for New Zealand agencies requesting Australian vetting checks.

Will my agency be exempt?

  1. fee exemption will apply if an agency makes only a small number of requests (20 or fewer) within a financial year (applies from 1 July to 30 June of the next year).

However, if your agency is part of an approved agency group and the combined number of vetting requests exceeds 20 all vetting requests will be charged for. (An approved agency group is an organisation that has two or more Police Vetting accounts, registered in their own right for the purposes of Police vetting but all belonging to the same organisation)

For example: Vetting agency (Wellington branch) submits 10 vets. Vetting agency (Auckland branch) submits 5 vets. Vetting agency (Christchurch branch) submits 6 vets. The combined volume of this Approved Agency group is 21 vets therefore the agency group will be charged for 21 vets.

A fee waiver will apply if your agency is a registered charity and you have added your charity registration number to your agency details in the Police Vetting Service website.

Please note there is no need to do this yet, we will let you know when our website has been updated to allow for applications to be submitted.

A fee waiver may also apply if your agency is facing: extreme financial hardship, significant adverse effects arising from an exceptional circumstance.

What happens next?

You don’t need to do anything yet, other than be aware of the coming changes and begin preparing for them. In the meantime, we will be updating our website as our work progresses and will continue to keep you informed. In April, we will send an email asking you to update your agency details, which will involve answering some questions about your agency and providing us with billing information.

Need more information? In the meantime, more information is available on the Police Vetting Service’s website – go to: Frequently Asked Questions

Again, we ask that you please hold off contacting us for now with questions about fees or waivers while we are still working through the cost recovery process.

We expect to update our website with more information around mid-April.

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