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Construction Skills Certification Scheme logoThe CSCS was set up to help the construction industry to improve quality and reduce accidents. CSCS cards are increasingly demanded as proof of occupational competence by contractors, public and private clients and others. A CSCS card provides a simple way to prove you are competent to work on a construction site. Over 1.7m cards have been  issued, according to CSCS website.

Types of CSCS cards

CSCS introduced new card designs in January 2010. The new range of CSCS cards cover 11 categories and cards come in a variety of colours: Red, Green, Blue, Gold, Black, White & Yellow, White & Grey and Yellow.

Existing cards continue to be valid until their expiry date. You can find images and information about the old style CSCS cards here.  Some people have Platinum cards, which are being replaced by Black on renewal.

Preparing to apply for a CSCS card

Deciding which card is the right one for you will depend on the type of work you do, how experienced you are and your qualifications or membership of professional bodies.

To apply for most CSCS cards you have to pass a health and safety test and demonstrate your competence.

If you know which type of card you should apply for, because your employer or a client has told you for example, you can visit the Types of Cards page on the CSCS website to find out what evidence you need to provide, which health and safety test you need to pass and what sort of application form you should complete.

If you don’t know which is the right card for you and what you have to do to apply for it check the occupations section of the CSCS website.

CSCS cards cost £30 and the Construction Skills Health and Safety Test is £17.50.

Applying for a CSCS card

Applying for a CSCS card is easy. It helps if you have all the information you need before you start, and the following is a useful checklist.

CSCS will:

  • ask you for your occupation, name, date of birth, home address and National Insurance number
  • talk to you about your current job, your past experience, whether you have any qualifications and whether you belong to a professional body
  • agree with you which CSCS card you should apply for
  • agree with you which health and safety test you need to book, if you don’t have the appropriate qualification
  • tell you whether you need any additional qualifications or training to apply for a CSCS card
  • confirm whether you need to send any paperwork with your completed and signed application form
  • ask for details of your credit or debit card to pay £30 for your CSCS card
  • send you an application form for you to complete

You will need to:

  • book the appropriate health and safety test by calling 0344 994 4488 or online at www.cscs.uk.com/health-and-safety-test. You will be asked for details of your credit or debit card to pay £17.50 for the test
  • decide whether you want to buy revision materials for the test. They are available from ConstructionSkills on 0344 994 4488 at www.healthandsafetytest.co.uk and also from many high street and online booksellers
  • pass the health and safety test. If you do not pass the test, contact the booking line on 0344 994 4488 to rebook.  You must retake the test and submit your application within 90 days or you will be required to pay an additional £30 card fee
  • complete the application form and provide a passport size and quality photograph of yourself.
  • Check that all the required signatures and paperwork including a copy of your test pass certificate have been included and return it to CSCS, PO Box 114, Bircham Newton, King’s Lynn, Norfolk, PE31 6XD

Your card will be sent to the address on your application form within 10 working days.

However if the application form has to be returned to you because it is incomplete or includes incorrect information you will have the opportunity to resubmit it.

If you need more information or have any questions visit www.cscs.uk.com or call 0844 576 8777

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