Most roles for adult volunteers (i.e. those 18 or over) within Scouting require a Disclosure check to be completed as part of the Appointments Process and the Disclosure to be renewed at least every 5 years. This is a mandatory requirement for these roles (see POR The Appointments Process for clarification of which roles require an up to date Disclosure).

For new volunteers, as soon as an adult has been added to Compass and a Disclosure check has been requested, the applicants details are passed through to The Scout Association's online disclosure processing system called Atlantic Data. You then need to complete and submit your Disclosure application within 30 days.

The quickest and easiest way to complete a Disclosure application is by completing it in Atlantic Data (an image of the login screen is shown alongside). The Scout Association understand that it’s not always possible to get the applicant, the ID checker and a connection to the internet all in one place.  If this is the case, the ID Checking Form can be used.

Full details (including those documents that you will need to produce to have your identity checked) are available by clicking here.


To ensure that all Disclosures are up to date, during the autumn, new process were introduced for Disclosures. A summary of these (as a process diagram) can be found by clicking here or on the summary diagram alongside.

There are three key elements to this process for Disclosures. These are:

  • Welcome and reminder emails for new adults joining Scouting who require a disclosure
  • Reminder emails for existing adults whose disclosure requires renewal
  • The suspension and unsuspension of adults who have not submitted a disclosure application

In order for these systems to work efficiently, it is important that all volunteers (including Occasional Helpers) have a valid email address recorded on Compass so that the reminders are not missed.

New adults joining (or re-joining) Scouting who require a disclosure will receive a welcome email two days after they are added to Compass (Note: the “clock” starts when they are added to Compass, not from the role start date). The email will remind them that obtaining a Disclosure plays an essential part in safeguarding the young people in the Movement. It will also explain how to obtain a valid disclosure and that they need to complete the application process within 30 days. This email will be copied to their line manager, the relevant Commissioner and Appointment Secretary.

If a completed disclosure application has not been made within 20 days, a reminder email will be sent to the individual and copied to their line manager, the relevant Commissioner and Appointment Secretary.

Adults who are required to renew their disclosure will receive reminder emails informing them that their disclosure is about to expire approximately 90 days, 60 days and 30 days before it does. The email(s) will explain what they have to do in order to apply for a new disclosure. Their line manager, relevant Commissioner and Appointment Secretary will also be informed at 90, 60 and 30 days that the disclosure is about to expire.

If by the time the original disclosure expires a completed application has not been made, further reminders will be sent after 1 day and 20 days after expiry.

Suspensions of adults who have not submitted a disclosure application

If after 30 days of being added to Compass as a new adult, or expiry of their disclosure for an existing adult, a completed disclosure application has not been made, the relevant commissioner (normally the District Commissioner) will be informed that they must suspend the individual concerned.

Suspensions are not an automated process, however they are mandatory and Commissioners will need to complete the suspension process on Compass (including obtaining the approval of the next Commissioner up in the line manager chain). It is critical that ‘No valid disclosure’ is selected as the suspension reason. The Commissioner must also inform the individual concerned and their line manager.

Once suspended on Compass, individuals who have an email address on Compass will automatically receive email notification of their suspension together with a link to some guidance notes for that suspended person. 

If suspensions are not implemented by the relevant Commissioner or the role closed within seven days of notification, the matter will be escalated automatically to the next Commissioner up in the line management chain.

Ending suspensions

Once suspended, in order to be unsuspended the individual concerned will need to complete a disclosure application, obtain a valid disclosure and complete the vetting process. Once they have cleared the vetting process the relevant Commissioner and Appointment Secretary will be notified and the individual will be unsuspended by HQ. The Commissioner will need to contact the individual concerned and tell them that they have been unsuspended and confirm this in writing. 

If a disclosure has not been applied for within 60 days following their suspension, the roles held by the individual concerned will be closed. If they subsequently wish to re-join Scouting they will need to restart the joining process.

Obtaining a disclosure

The process for obtaining a disclosure remains unchanged. You can find additional guidance about how to process a Disclosure check by clicking here.

Quick start and full user guides on using Compass can be found on the Compass Support website.