Getting a Criminal Record Check certificate from China

Getting a Criminal Record Check covering the time you were in China is not something that you often think of until you have returned home and are applying for positions that require them. Getting a no criminal record check needn’t be difficult or frustrating. The process is the same whether applying from within China or abroad, the difference is that if you apply remotely you simply need to authorise someone currently in China to go to the Public Security Bureau on your behalf. Here’s how you can do it either in China or from home.

If you are currently living in China

You apply for the certificate of no criminal record from the Public Security Bureau, often abbreviated to PSB. The PSB will issue the certificate to applicants that have a Work (Z), Student (X) or Journalist (J1) visa. Other visas may be eligible but the process is slightly different. You can apply in person or via someone you have given permission to apply on your behalf.

To apply for the no criminal record certificate you are required to bring the following to the PSB:

  • Your passport containing your Chinese visa
  • Your Residence Permit
  • Your Work permit
  • A letter from your employer or school confirming you as a student/employee there.
  • Your employment contract from your Chinese employer.
  • The application fee

Once you have bought these documents and completed the application form the PSB will perform the relevant checks to confirm that you have no criminal record during your time in China. The bureau will then produce your certificate. This will be in Chinese. In order to use this abroad, you should then get this certificate translated and notarised to certify that the translation is genuine. You get this by taking the no criminal record certificate to the Notary Public office in China. In order to complete the official translation, you should bring to the office:

  • Your original certificate of No Criminal Convictions as issued by the PSB
  • Your original passport (containing your residence permit)

If you are applying from outside of China

Most cities and locations will allow you to appoint a representative to apply on your behalf. For this, you need a friend or contact in China that is willing to go to the PSB on your behalf. Then, the required documents and process is identical to the process above with addition of the following. When your representative applies on your behalf, they also need to bring with them the following:

  • His or her Chinese ID card
  • A signed authorisation letter from you. You can print this out and sign it in pen then scan the letter and email/ send them the letter to print out in China

As with all regulations and jurisdictions these will change slightly according to location and time of applying. The above is a guide to show you the general process and should point you in the direction of getting your no criminal conviction certificate from China.


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