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Wilfrid Laurier University Leaf
November 25, 2015
Canadian Excellence

Police Record Checks

My placement requires a Police Record Check (PRC). Why?

Many organizations accepting students are servicing vulnerable populations. The Police Background Check helps to ensure the safety of the clients they serve, and also offers you protection. As well, you will have many more placement options to choose from if you complete your Police Background Check. Only a small handful of organizations do not require their volunteers to obtain at least one of the following types of Police Background Checks:

Police Criminal Record Check (PCRC) – least information given

Police Information Check (PIC) – more information given

Police Vulnerable Sector Check (PVSC) – most information given

Most of the community agencies and organizations require that their volunteers have a Police Information Check or Vulnerable Sector Check that was completed in the last 30 days to 6 months.  If you expect to work with children, youth, seniors, people with disabilities, or people with mental health issues, then a Vulnerable Sector Check will likely be required.  As PVSCs can take 4-6 weeks to be processed, it is important that you plan ahead to ensure that you have your police check in time to start your community placement promptly at the start of term. 

How do I obtain a PRC?

Some Police Stations (including Brantford Police Station) require that you know where you will be placed before you obtain your background check. Please check with your local Police Station to determine the fastest route possible, associated fees at your expense, and all associated ID requirements, to obtain your police background check.

You may also choose to apply for a Police Background Check online in many regions across Ontario. Typically, a convenience fee at your expense is associated with this processPlease confirm all details with your local Police Station to determine if this is a possibility for you.

Some police stations require you to present a letter from our institution confirming your participation in a CSL placement. As such, please bring this form with you when obtaining your police background check for Brantford, and this form for Waterloo. If this form is not sufficient, please contact someone from our staff team. 


New RCMP procedures require that if you have a criminal offense on your record, you may be required to get fingerprinted by a third party at an additional cost to you before your Police Records Check can be issued to you. If fingerprinting is required, you will need to allow additional time to complete this process.

How much do PRCs cost?

Typical fees range from $15-$30, and are largely dependent on the region you obtain your check in.  You must pay with cash and they don't provide change.  It's a good idea to get a receipt.

Discounts are no longer offered to college or university students who are completing a placement as part of a course requirement, unless the organization you will be assisting can offer this discount.

When should I get a PRC?

As soon as possible!  PRCs typically take 4-6 weeks to complete.  Some communities take longer to process requests, others are faster.

If your placement requires a PRC before starting, do not sign-up for it if you do not have the PRC in-hand.  Some, but not all, community partners will allow you to start a placement if you can prove you have started the process of applying for a PRC (i.e. providing a receipt).

I have an old PRC, can I still use it?

It depends on the community partner.  The majority of partners require a PRC that is less than 6 months old, with some even requiring a PRC no less than 30 days old.