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Certain jobs in the Council require post holders to obtain a disclosure or become a member of the PVG Scheme.  These help the Council to ensure that they are employing the right people for certain types of work.  Jobs which do not require this will ask preferred candidates to provide us with a criminal convictions self-declaration.  On this page you will find information about the different disclosure levels as well as information about what to do should your preferred candidate have a disclosed criminal conviction. 

Basic Disclosures

A Basic Disclosure can be used in any situation deemed appropriate by the Service.  There is no set criteria for obtaining one but managers should have an appropriate business justification as to why they are requesting a basic disclosure from an employee.

Basic Disclosures with provide a snapshot of the candidate or employee’s unspent criminal convictions at the time of processing.

Basic Disclosures cost £25.

Standard Disclosures

A Standard Disclosure can only be used in situations where a candidate or employee works:

  • In administration of the law
  • With firearms or explosive licences
  • In the provision of a care service

A Standard Disclosure is a snapshot taken at the time of processing and will show:

  • Unspent Convictions
  • Relevant Spent Convictions
  • Unspent Cautions

Standard Disclosures cost £25.

The PVG Scheme

There are strict criteria as to when a person can become a PVG Scheme member.  There are two types of membership, one for those working with children and those working with vulnerable adults.  A person can be a scheme member for both categories if required.

For each type of criteria there are different definitions and criteria:

  • Children

An individual under the age of eighteen.

  • Vulnerable Adults

An individual, aged 16 or over, and in receipt of certain prescribed services including a registered care service, a health service, a community care service or a welfare service.

A PVG certificate is screenshot of the time of processing but the membership aspect means that an individual member is consistently checked and employers are advised of any relevant convictions or cautions. Employers are also advised if the individual comes under consideration for listing or becomes barred from working with children and/or vulnerable adults.

The certificate will show:

  • Unspent Convictions
  • Relevant Spent Convictions
  • Unspent Cautions
  • If the person is on the sex offenders register
  • Relevant information from the police force
  • Prescribed civil orders

Disclosure Scotland will also undertake criminal records checks on certain EU nationals from participating EU countries.  This may require certain EU nationals to provide additional information.  Please find more information below:

PVG and Participating EU Countries

If an individual is already a PVG Scheme member, there is a specific form for this.  An update application costs £18.

If an individual has never been a member of the PVG Scheme, they will need to complete an application to join the scheme.  This costs £59.

Does my post need a PVG?

You can use the assessment tool below to determine whether or not your post requires a PVG:

PVG Assessment Tool

I’m recruiting for an unpaid volunteer, do they need a PVG?

Regulated work does not need to be paid.  You should determine if a PVG is required using the above tool.  For more information on volunteers and PVG, please see the below guidance:

Volunteers and Protecting Vulnerable Groups checks – – Frequently Asked Questions

How are they done?

Disclosure Scotland manages all applications for disclosures and application to renew or join the PVG Scheme.  Applications are completed by a candidate or employee, are checked by the line manager and are then sent to a countersignatory in People and Organisation. The countersignatory will then send the form to Disclosure Scotland and they will process the form from there.

Forms can be requested from People and Organisation if required but are sent out automatically as part of the recruitment process.

ID Required

All disclosures for Council jobs require THREE forms of identification.  The three forms of ID must include photographic ID and the current address of the applicant.

Who receives the outcome?

For Basic and Standard Disclosures, only candidates and employees receive copies of their disclosure certificates.  These should be sent to a line manager and to People and Organisation.

For PVG outcomes, these are received by both the candidates / employees and the countersignatory who will share the outcome with the line manager.

What if a candidate or employee has a criminal conviction?

If an employee or candidate has a criminal conviction, the Service will need to determine whether or not the conviction has an impact on an individual’s ability to undertake the duties of their role or if it would have any risk to end service users. 

Questions you might want to ask include:

  • Does the post require one-to-one contact with children or vulnerable adults?
  • Is the position supervised?
  • Is there a risk to service users or the organisation?
There is guidance available for recruiting managers in Appendix 7  of the recruitment and selection guidance.  Additional support can be found in the Scotland Works for You guidance available on the Scottish Government website.

If, during the recruitment process, a disclosure certificate shows convictions or cautions that the recruiting service deems unsuitable to the role then the recruiting service has the right to withdraw the preferred candidate status of the individual.

If an existing employee has a criminal conviction, there may need to be an investigation process to determine whether or not this will impact on their role. 

What if an employee did not disclose their conviction?

Employees must make their line managers aware if they are charged with any criminal convictions.  If they do not, this will result in a disciplinary investigation.

What is consideration for listing?

If Disclosure Scotland needs to investigate an individual’s suitability to work with children or vulnerable adults, they will be under ‘consideration for listing’.  This means that Disclosure Scotland will be undertaking an investigation and may conclude that the individual becomes barred.

As an employer, we do not need to do anything at this stage.  However, managers should liaise with the individuals to get up to date information and to ensure sufficient support is in place for them.

What if an employee becomes barred from working with children and / or vulnerable adults?

If an employee becomes barred from working with children and / or vulnerable adults, they will need to be immediately removed from undertaking regulated work.  A disciplinary investigation will need to take place.  There will also need to be a suspension or alternative to suspension put in place during the disciplinary process.

Making a Referral

An employer has the responsibility for referring an employee to Disclosure Scotland if they believe there has been harmful behaviour that might affect an individual’s suitability to work with children and / or vulnerable adults.  This applies when the person is a PVG Scheme member or not.

A referral should be made by the Service when the harmful behaviour has resulted in the individual being dismissed or if they left prior to a potential dismissal (i.e. if we were investigating potential gross misconduct) or if the harmful behaviour resulted in them being transferred away from doing regulated work.

Please find the referral form below:

Disclosure Scotland Employer Referral Form

What is my PVG or Disclosure number?

While we will store your PVG or Disclosure certificate, we will not be able to share this with you due to it being third party information.  Disclosure Scotland can provide you with your PVG or Disclosure number or a copy of your certificate.

Contact Disclosure Scotland

Telephone: 03000 2000 40

Email: info@disclosurescotland.gsi.gov.uk

Twitter: @DisclosureScot

Address: Disclosure Scotland, PO Box 250, Glasgow, G51 1YU

Other Guidance and Documentation

A CSG’s Guide to Checking and Completing a Police Act Disclosure Application 2016

A CSG’s Guide to Checking and Completing an Application to Join 2016

A CSG’s Guide to Checking and Completing an Existing Scheme Member Application 2016

Guidance on Completing Applications and How to Avoid the most Common Errors

Guidance on the recruitment of exoffenders

Policy Statement on the Secure Handling of Disclosure information

PVG Protocol

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