Security Industry Authority Licence Application FAQs

General FAQs

What information do I need to bring with me?

The SIA should have sent you a licence application reference number. Bring this to a participating branch within 3 months of completing your on-line Security Industry Authority licence application.

We will check your documents, take your photograph, record your signature and take payment where applicable.

Make sure any documents you bring are originals, not photocopies. We'll send your application electronically to the SIA.

For an additional fee we'll post any supporting documentation off to the SIA for you.

After I have been to the Post Office do I need to send any of my identity documents to the SIA?

Your Next Steps notification will tell you if you need to send any documents directly to the SIA.  Failure to send your documents to the SIA within 21 days of visiting the Post Office will result in your application being withdrawn.  Please read your next steps notification carefully for instruction on how to send your documents to the SIA. Until the SIA receive your documents they will not be able to progress your application further.

Will the Post Office send off my documents to the SIA?

Yes - though there's an extra fee to pay on top of any application fee paid.

If you want the Post Office to post any extra documents to the SIA, you’ll need the cost of postage and envelope .

You will also need a covering note with your reference number and your full name and address.

What happens when I have my photograph taken and my signature recorded?

Taking your information is a quick and easy process. We photograph your face digitally and then you write your signature on a digital pad.

Your details are captured electronically and we send them securely to the SIA for them to continue your application for a licence.

We are aware of the need to protect applicants' dignity, privacy and modesty. There will be special arrangements for applicants where needed.

What if I don’t have a licence application reference number from the SIA?

You can only use this service if you've been given a licence application reference number.

You can obtain your licence application reference number from your SIA online account.

You need to bring this reference number with you to the Post Office or you won’t be able to submit your information.

When is the best time to visit the Post Office?

To make your visit as quick as possible we recommend that you attend your selected Post Office on a Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday or Friday – this is when we’re less busy.

Have a look at our Branch Finder to see where the service is available.

How much does it cost?

The SIA licence fee is £220, if you are applying for more than one licence an extra fee of £110 per additional licence is payable.

You will have received an email from the SIA titled 'Instructions to complete your SIA application' confirming the fee you have to pay when you visit the Post Office.

What happens to my photograph and signature?

Once we’ve taken your photo and recorded your signature, we send them electronically to the SIA where they're added to your application.

The SIA will then continue to process your application.

Biometric FAQs

I wear a headscarf. Will I have to remove it when my photo is taken?

Head coverings worn for religious reasons are acceptable, but care must be taken to ensure your face is not covered.

Please remember to wear a dark coloured headscarf, as lighter coloured head coverings may be too difficult to see – which could lead to the photo being rejected.

We’re aware of the need to protect your dignity, privacy and modesty. If you need any special arrangements, just let us know. We’ll be happy to help.

Can I wear my glasses when my photo is taken?

You can’t wear glasses or sunglasses while your photo is being taken.

You must also remove the following items:

Hats, scarves, or any other headgear not worn for religious reasons
Bluetooth headsets

For more information about suitable photos, please view the Home Office Photo Guidance

I use a wheelchair – will I be able to register my information at the Post Office?

Absolutely – here’s a list of branches with larger enrolment booths for easier wheelchair access

Our standard renewal booth is 0.694 metres wide, while our larger booths are 1.193 metres wide.

Please make sure that you’ll have enough room to enter the booth and rotate the chair by 90 degrees to face the camera.

If you have any questions, or you need to find your nearest accessible branch, get in touch using our contact form. We’ll be happy to help.

Will someone be able to come into the booth with me to help me?

Only if you require physical assistance.

The actual process is very simple, and can easily be explained to someone who speaks English as a second language.

Please note: There’s clear mark on the floor of the Post Office biometric enrolment station – that’s where you need to stand to have your photograph taken.

To make sure your photograph is accepted, you need to stand in the correct place. Standing too far from the camera will result in a grey bar appearing at the bottom of the image, which can affect the contrast of the image – leading to it being rejected and requiring you to restart the process.