Police Check or Criminal Background Check for China Z Visa?

I have heard vague rumors of criminal background checks being required for foreigners working in China.  I don’t remember ever dealing with this when I worked there in the early 2000’s, but now I see some employers asking for some form of background check.

Why do some jobs ask for this while others don’t?  For an American, does it entail getting an FBI background check with an apostille as is required for Korea, or can I get away with something simpler like a check from a local police station?

I don’t have any criminal record, but I am worried that this could delay my return to China more than I intended.  Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

Hello Bix8 and welcome to Expat.com

Hope that somebody will be able to inform you about that.

Expat.com Team

Yeah now everyone going to work In China is required to get a criminal clearance certificate,  we'll I'm not sure how things work in the US but, in South Africa,  all I had to do was,  go to my local police station,  told them what I needed,  they took my finger prints and send through the application,  within 3 weeks I got my clearance certificate

Thanks Ayden1 for your answer. It looks like it could be a bit more of a headache for U.S. citizens, depending on the province I end up working in.

For anyone else wondering about this, chinajoblist.com/visas-and-red-tape/ has step by step information for getting the police check (for U.S. citizens), and about which provinces require what.

Bix8: I have taught and coached basketball in Canada, the US, Europe and more recently in china.  When in the west, I was subjected to background checks.  Any position you do working with kids requires it....China did not use to be that way but I believe they have had more than their share of undesirables coming in so now they are very cautious.....can you blame them???

As far as I am aware it is only in Shenzhen.  However it may spread across the courntry. My police letter had to be verified by the Irish government in Ireland and then taken by hand(I posted it and they sent it back to me) to the Chinese Embassy in Ireland to be authorised and stamped. A real pain in the ass, and the Chinese Embassy took 4 weeks to stamp it and it had to be collected in person; they refused to post it.

This is an old posted question but since its quite relevant today (3 years later), I'll add my 2 cents for what its worth.

The  requirements of criminal background checks and authenticated diploma's have been around for some time, but the issue was it wasnt being properly implemented country wide, and as we all know, government regulations and laws are interpreted and implemented in varying degree's in different regions/cities in China.

Now it IS implement across China and with relatively uniform requirements. Currently if you renew your visa, you will be requested to provide an authenticated diploma to show proof of bachelors degree (minimum). Change employers and you may need to show both diploma and authenticated Criminal background check.

Each applicants country will have varying degree's of process required but the general gist is that its typically authenticated at a foreign affairs department, then finally authenticated at the China embassy or consulate in the applicants home country.

Where there IS wiggle room is that the Chinese government still has not defined exactly what background check is required?  Americans for example, can submit police checks at local city and state level.. some that only require DOB and a name to run a check, even if they have never lived in that state or city! This sets up loopholes for people who want to avoid FBI background checks which cover all states. Hopefully this loophole will be closed eventually.

New topic