Most blue card applications with no criminal history or other concerning information are processed within 28 business days and will usually arrive by post 2 weeks after the application has been approved.
Applications submitted online are usually processed more quickly than paper applications.
If your application is approved, we will notify you by email. If you did not provide an email address, we will notify you by post.
You can start working once you have received notification that your card has been approved, while you wait for your card to arrive.
Watch the following video to find out more about blue card application processing times.
Processing times for blue card applications video
Duration 00:01:11|Closed captions icon
Have you recently applied for a blue card and wondering how long your application will take to process?
All applications are subject to the blue card check.
You can find out more about the blue card check on our website or watch our video, ‘the blue card check’.
Most applications, with no criminal history or other concerning information, are processed within 28 days.
Once your application is approved we will let you know by email or post.
You don't need your physical card to get started.
Simply give your blue card details to your employer and you can start working once your employer links you.
Your physical card should arrive about 2 weeks after your application was approved.
If you haven’t heard from us, and your application has taken longer than 28 business days, you can contact us via our website or by calling our contact centre on 1800 113 611.
The National Reference System
An application may take longer to process if information is returned as part of the National Reference System (NRS) database check or the blue card check.
The NRS check involves a search of a centralised database to determine if another state or territory has already made an adverse working with children decision about you. Find out more about the NRS.
Blue card check
An application may take longer than 28 days to process if information is returned as part of the blue card check. The blue card check includes a national criminal history check, which means we get information from all over Australia.
If your name matches someone else’s details, the agency conducting the check needs to clarify this information before returning it to us. This process can take additional time, even if the applicant has no criminal history.
If criminal history or other concerning information is returned to us, the application time frame may be extended. We will need to assess the information to determine whether you can hold a blue card and may contact you for more information to continue the assessment.
Watch the following video to find out more about the blue card check.
The blue card check video
Duration 00:01:29|Closed captions icon
Did you know all blue card applications go through a screening process known as the ‘blue card check’.
The blue card check is more than just a police check.
We get information from all states within Australia, from when an applicant was 10 years old.
The information includes:
charges and convictions, even if there was no conviction was recorded
child protection disqualifying orders
disciplinary information, and
police investigative information.
Our website outlines the type of information we get as part of the blue card check.
When information is returned, it does not automatically mean you won’t get a blue card.
Before we decide whether to issue you a blue card, we invite you to tell your side of the story; we call this a ‘submissions’ process.
You can find out more about the submissions process on our website or watch our video called ‘the submissions process’.
If you get a call or letter from us and you’re not sure what to do, give our community information team a call or ask to speak to an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander advocacy officer.
If you make a combined application, Disability Services will process your disability worker screening application and advise you of the outcome. If approved, we will then process your blue or exemption card application.
If you have not received an outcome from Disability Services, you will need to contact them for an update.
You can contact us to follow up on your application.