Getting an ACRO for a successful Spanish visa application

If you plan on moving to Spain for work or study, you will need to do an ACRO criminal background check as part of your visa application. Find out what you need to know about ACRO.
ACRO Spanish Visas Image

The ACRO Criminal Records Office, or just ACRO, provides criminal background checks. Those who wish to have a successful Spanish visa application, will require either a Police Certificate, or an International Child Protection Certificate. 

Past criminal convictions can make it harder for your visa to be approved, but not impossible.

The ACRO service differs from a DBS check, as the latter is a background check issued by the Disclosure and Barring Service and most often used for applying for jobs in the UK.

ACROs are primarily used for international services such as visa applications for international immigration or employment. 

Other services they provide include:

  • Police Certificates
  • International Child Protection Certificates
  • Subject Access Requests
  • Record Deletion

Police Certificates

A Police Certificate shows what criminal background you may or may not have. An ACRO check is required for most forms of Spanish Visas. However, ones such as a Tourist Visa do not need an ACRO.

How to apply for a Police Certificate

First, you must complete a form to receive your Police Certificate. You can download the Police Certificate form from ACRO’s website. The form must be completed in Microsoft Word. 

Before you email the form to ACRO, you should also ensure that you have the required supporting documents, these should be attached as separate files. You will need: 

  • Coloured passport style photos
  • Proof of ID
  • Proof of address
  • Extra documents, such as Power of Attorney, authorisation documents etc.
  • Signed terms and conditions

Also, you will have to provide payment details for the certificate to be processed. 

Once you have attached your completed form and any supporting documents, they must be sent to ACRO.

How long will it take to arrive?

Processing times can take up to 30 working days.

Additionally, depending on where you want your certificate delivered, delivery time will vary.

  • Delivery within the UK will take 8 postal days.
  • Somewhere within Europe will take 10 postal days.
  • International delivery will take 20 postal days.

If you have not completed the application form properly, it may take longer.

International Child Protection Certificates

If you plan on working with children when you go to Spain, you will need an International Child Protection Certificate.

ACRO developed this in unison with the National Crime Agency. It was created to protect children from offenders in the UK who want to travel overseas.

How to apply for an International Child Protection Certificate

First, you will need to complete the application form. It can be found on ACRO’s website. Aside from requiring a different form and email address, the process is nearly identical to the one for Police Certificates.

Then, you will need to attach any supporting documents as individual files, along with the form.

  • A copy of your employment letter or contract.
  • Coloured passport style photos.
  • Proof of ID.
  • Extra documents, such as Power of Attorney, authorisation documents etc.
  • Signed terms and conditions.

Payment details will also be required for this form.

Finally, once the form is complete and you have all of your supporting documents ready, you can email them to ACRO.

How long will it take to arrive?

The certificate will take up to around 30 working days to process.

Additionally, you will have to wait longer due to delivery times.

  • Delivery within the UK will take 8 postal days.
  • Somewhere within Europe will take 10 postal days.
  • International delivery will take 20 postal days.

Contact Spanish Visa Specialists about Spanish Visa Applications

If you need assistance with a Police Certificate or an International Child Protection Certificate, contact Spanish Visa Specialists today.

You can contact us by phone at 0161 932 1451 or WhatsApp at 07884 131909

Or, you can use our contact form, or email using info@spanishvisas.co.uk.

Contact us to speak to one of our friendly consultants

We are experts in Spanish emigration. We understand how the system works and guide our clients through the entire process.

Whether you are simply researching your options or ready to apply, we are here to help.

Contact us