We have provided
a series of frequently asked questions together with answers that may help you
to understand the process more. If you are unable to find a question or answer
that you have please email us your question on firstname.lastname@example.org.
exactly is Atlantic Data Ltd. and how does it operate?
Atlantic Data Ltd. is a registered Umbrella Body with the both the Disclosure and Barring Service and the Disclosure Scotland, which enables us to offer disclosure
services to its clients. This means Atlantic Data Ltd. is able to obtain Basic,
Standard and Enhanced Disclosures for organisations seeking to carry out out
checks on personnel. To use our services all organisations must enter into agreement
to ensure the Disclosure Code of Practice is upheld to protect individuals applying
In addition Atlantic Data Ltd. offers a comprehensive range of services to employers
and employees please see "our Services" section in the information
is an umbrella body?
Are organisations which are Registered Bodies with the DBS but which act as
intermediaries for other organisations who wish to use the disclosure service
but are not registered themselves. The function of an umbrella body is therefore,
to countersign applications on behalf of organisations which have chosen not
to register in their own right.
criteria must an umbrella body fulfil?
For an umbrella body to agree to countersign a disclosure on behalf of another
organisation, the umbrella body must assure themselves that the organisation,
for which the applicant has had to apply for a disclosure, is depending upon
the type of Disclosure check entitled to ask an exempted question under the
Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exceptions) Order 1975. Umbrella Bodies are also
responsible for ensuring that all parties with whom they share the disclosure
information act in accordance with the Code of Practice.
can I register to use this service?
To register for the service please contact us. You can find our contact information
by selecting the "Contact" link in the information area.
are the costs?
We provide a range of services for organisations that wish to submit Disclosure
applications. Our pricing structure works on a fixed pricing structure. However
different organisations require different services in a way that best fits with
their organisations structure. With this in mind we believe it is best for you
to contact us to discuss our services and to find out which services are best
Disclosures - The Fundamentals...
What is Disclosure?
A Disclosure is a document that contains an individual's criminal history (according to the police and government departments) which employers can use to make safer recruitment decisions. Disclosure results are provided in certificates which can be used in conjunction with applications for employment.
is disclosure important?
It is a way to help protect the vulnerable in our society by providing a system
whereby those deemed unsuitable to work with, or be in a position of responsibility
and trust over, either children or adults, are identified. In this
way disclosure helps organisations to make more thorough recruitment decisions.
does the Disclosure process work?
In order for an individual or organisation to make a Disclosure application they must register with the DBS to become a registered body in their own right. This means nominating a lead counter signatory for your organisation who, will have to undergo an enhanced disclosure check themselves. There is however a registration fee of £300. Alternatively an individual or organisation may prefer to undertake the services of an Umbrella Body like Atlantic Data Ltd. who will act as an intermediary and countersign the application on the organisation or individual's behalf. Once either of these two routes has been adopted the applicant must fill out a form which will be checked by the registered body and then sent to the DBS for processing. Finally a Disclosure certificate will be issued to the applicant.
needs to apply for a Disclosure check?
Anyone who is working with children or adults whether in a paid or
unpaid capacity will need to have either a Standard or Enhanced Disclosure check.
In addition, if an individual is likely to come into contact with vulnerable
people either through the course of their work or for a specific purpose, then
it is likely that your organisation will need to ensure a disclosure check is
carried out. This includes Trustees of Children's Charities and individuals
who sit on the management committees of projects that work with children. A
Disclosure may only be requested for those applicants for whom you are offering
are a Voluntary organisation our volunteers are not employed, do we need to
carry out Disclosure Checks?
In the same way as non-voluntary organisations, voluntary organisations whether
large or small, carry the same responsibility for using safe selection procedures.
Whilst this may put some people off, the safety and well-being of children and
adults must come first. Hence, in all organisations which place people
in a position of trust over children or adults these checks must
be carried out.
types of Disclosures exist?
There are three
types of Disclosure:
All employers and volunteering organisations are entitled to ask prospective
employees/volunteers to obtain a Basic Disclosure. This Disclosure is available
to all members of the public. Basic Disclosure will show all convictions held
on the Police National Computer (PNC) which are not 'spent' as defined under
the terms of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act (ROA) 1974.
Disclosure: A Standard Disclosure shows any cautions, convictions, reprimands and warnings on an applicant's record.
Disclosures: An Enhanced Disclosure shows any cautions, convictions, reprimands and warnings on an applicant's record. It is also processed by the local police force. In some instances, it may involve checks against the barring registers
long does it take to get a disclosure?
The length of time it takes for a Disclosure to reach the applicant greatly depends on the accuracy and completeness of the applicant's application form i.e. all personal information correctly presented and the sufficient number of identity documents provided. From the time the DBS receives an application form, they usually issue a result within 14 and 28 days.
will the disclosure be sent to?
The Disclosure result will be sent to the applicant.
how long is a disclosure valid?
Disclosure certificates have no validity period. This is to say the information
provided on the certificate is correct up until the date it was printed but
obviously it can not make apparent any new information that may arise on the
individual after this date. Hence a disclosure certificate is more useful the
sooner it is used by the applicant for the potential job/voluntary position.
UK legislation makes Disclosures compulsory for some positions. It is a criminal offence for people with criminal records to work in these positions. It is also a criminal offence to knowingly offer work to such people. When the law does not require a Disclosure but an employer would like all applicants to undergo one, the employer must make it clear from the outset that a satisfactory Disclosure is a condition of employment. If a prospective employee refuses to provide one, the employer is within their rights not to proceed with the application.
accessing the Disclosure and Barring Service's...
How can I/my organisation gain access to the service?
The individual seeking work applies for all applications. However, if a Standard
or Enhanced Disclosure is being requested, then they will have to go through
a Registered Body or Registered Umbrella Body. Atlantic Data Ltd. is a Registered
Umbrella Body (see about Atlantic Data Ltd.). All organisations who wish to
access the service, whether by registering their own organisation or by using
a umbrella organisation like Atlantic Data Ltd., must sign up to the Disclosure and Barring Service's Code of Practice and Explanatory Guide for Registered Persons
and other recipients of Disclosure Information (Code of Practice). This places
stringent rules on the storage and handling of the information and the treatment
of applicants. Registration costs £300, plus an extra £5 for each
additional Counter signatory. Further information on the registration process
can be obtained from the DBS. Disclosure and Barring Service, PO Box 110, Liverpool.
L69 3EF Information line: 03000 200 190 Registration application line: 0870
90 90 822
my organisation register with the DBS?
There are many factors that you will need to consider when determining whether
it is in your best interests to register, or to use an Umbrella Body like Atlantic
Data Ltd. The DBS must also decide on the fitness and appropriateness for your
organisation as not all organisations cannot be registered. The size and structure
of your organisation will be a factor. Some organisations will have personnel
departments or senior managers who can handle the extra work, others may feel
that it is not appropriate to handle such sensitive information and that they
would prefer to access the information indirectly.
We recommend that
you consider the following points:
Does your staff
turnover justify registration, or would it be more economical to use an Umbrella
Body? The cost of registration may be prohibitive since some organisations feel
that the cost of registration does not justify the number of disclosures they
wish to apply for.
Does your organisation have the administrative capacity to process Disclosures?
Consider the responsibilities involved in being a signatory: Do you have anyone
suitable and willing of to act as a signatory?
Can you comply
fully with the Code of Practice? In particular, can you meet the storage and
security requirements and ensure that confidentiality is maintained?
Do you have the
knowledge to assess the information contained within the Disclosure?
Do you need to know the detail? You need to know that the law does not prohibit
your staff's employment and that their criminal history (if they have one) does
not contravene your policy on recruiting ex-offenders. However, there are issues
surrounding confidentiality, discrimination and staff working relations, which
can be avoided by not seeing the detail.
Whether you decide to register or to use an Umbrella Body, Atlantic Data Ltd.
offers a range of Disclosure Services to prepare your organisation for Disclosures.
making use of disclosure information...
ensure the safety of my clients?
A Disclosure lets you know if an applicant has a criminal record or (in some cases) is on the barring registers. They should be used along with an employer's other recruitment aids and be viewed in a similar light to references. Strong effective policies and procedures remain the key to ensuring the safety of your clients.
No. Firstly, remember Disclosure can only tell you about spent or current convictions,
or information that has formerly come to the notice of the police. Secondly,
remember that the accuracy of the check depends on the personal details, which
you provide - you must make sure that applicants are who they claim to be.
If a disclosure
reveals an individual to a have a previous conviction, then surely they are
not suitable for work?
This is not true. You need to use the Disclosure result information in conjunction
with the information you have collected through your selection process. Depending
on the position or role you are seeking to fill, a previous conviction may not
necessarily bar a person from working with children or adults. And
equally it may be illegal to deny someone employment purely on the grounds that
they have a criminal record.
the impact of Disclosures...
impact on my working practices, policies and procedures?
Disclosures will have an impact on many policies and your whole recruitment
process. New policies and procedures will need to be drafted, existing ones
amended. Contracts of Employment may need to be amended, which may require consultation/negotiation
with existing staff. Recruitment Application Packs will need reviewing and updating.
Compliance with the Code of Practice, in particular the storage and handling
requirements, may require an office reorganisation.
do they cost, and who pays for them?
The DBS’s charges are reviewed annual contact us for current prices. Disclosures
are free for volunteers provided they conform to the DBS definition of Volunteer
The fee is payable
by the applicant, although the employer may wish to reimburse the applicant
in certain circumstances. The administration cost of processing the Disclosure
application is met by the employer, either in their own staff time if they are
a Registered Body, or through the fees charged, if they use a Registered Umbrella