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Heidz

Police Clearance

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Hi 

I have a 2 questions about Police Certificates. 

1. do you suggest we wait to get the PC from SA or do you think they will accept if the are 12 months old (as opposed to 6 months) 

This is from the support section of the Travel.state.gov web page for police Clearance 

ImportantPolice certificates expire after one year, unless the certificate was issued from your country of previous residence and you have not returned there since the police certificate was issued. If at the time of your interview the following three items are all true, you must bring a new police certificate to your visa interview:

So my question is - if they expire for the visa process after 1 year - why do South Africans have to get them within in 6 months? Is it because the South African police service say they are only valid for 6 months? When we applied for ones for the UK, I asked them how long they would be valid for and they replied with "3 months; 6 months; 12 months - the person who needs to see them decides" 

From the Travel.State.gov web page on SA Police Clearance

Police Records

Available. Criminal records since 1901 covering the entire Republic are maintained at the South African Police Headquarters, Pretoria. The period The Commissioner of the South African Police issues certificates upon application, stating whether or not a criminal record exists, and, if so, particulars of the offense as well as any sentence passed.

The police authorities require an applicant to present verification of identity, such as a Book of Life, or valid passport, and a payment of R59.00 (South African rand fifty nine payable in cash, cheque or postal order, made payable to the South African police).

To obtain a certificate that is issued in single copy only, fingerprints must be taken by the local police in the applicant's place of residence. The South African police forwards the completed fingerprint chart and the fee to the head office in Pretoria for issuance of the police clearance certificate. If the applicant is residing in the United States, he or she should forward a bank draft in the amount of R59.00 together with a completed fingerprint chart (bearing an official signature and stamp of the local police station) to:

My next question is about my 16 year old and PC:- 

2. If my 15 year old is turning 16 (here in the UK) do I only need PC from here (current country of residence) or do I need to get one from SA too being his country of nationality? 

From ... AND... THEN the applicant needs a police certificate from...
the country of nationality if they resided there for more than 6 months is 16 years old or older (he will he 16 in Oct so should we get one for SA even though we left when he was 10?) the police authorities of that locality.
(THIS ONE IS FOR THE UK) the country of current residence (if different from nationality) if they resided there for more than 6 months was 16 years or older at that time the police authorities of that locality.
any previous country or countries of residence if residing there for more than 12 months was 16 years or older at that time the police authorities of that locality.
any country where arrested for any reason, regardless of how long they lived there was any age at that time the police authorities from place of arrest.

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I can give you my perspective/experience:
1.  I did my interview in London  - and my police clearance from SA was more than 6 months old, - in fact was more than a year old, and it was fine - I got it in about May 2007, but was gone from SA within a few months after that, and I used it at the consulate in London  in September 2008. 
2.  As for you son, I would think it would be fine, as he was under 16 when he last resided in SA, despite the fact that it is his country of nationality.  If, however, if you are applying for everyone else, it is probably easy enough to add him to the pile - but, to be honest, I wouldn't think you need it - e.g. I don't believe applicants in South Africa have got police clearances for their kids - after all, what is the cutoff then?  10 years old?  5 years of age?  

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- US immigration puts a one year expiry on all PCCs regardless of individual country domestic expiration dates

- if you have an old one but have not lived in a country since you got it, they will accept it

The turning 16 question is tricky, I’d personally probably get it for SA just in case, to be honest. I’d rather not need it and have it than not have it and need it....but that’s just me.

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