Apply to be a Qualifying Voluntary Organisation (QVO)

Last updated: 7 August 2018

If your organisation is a Qualifying Voluntary Organisation (QVO), you can get PVG applications for free for any volunteers doing regulated work.

PVG applications are not free for any QVO employees who aren't volunteers.

Qualifying Voluntary Organisations

A QVO is a not-for-profit organisation which isn't:

  • a further education institution or school
  • a public or local authority
  • under the management of a public or local authority

If you think your organisation meets these requirements, you can apply to make it a QVO.

You may be asked to provide documentary evidence that you meet the criteria.

Apply to be a QVO

There are 3 different ways to apply to be a QVO:

Enrol with Volunteer Scotland Disclosure Services

Volunteer Scotland Disclosure Services (VSDS) are part of Volunteer Scotland and are a registered body with Disclosure Scotland.

Scottish Ministers fund them to act as an umbrella body on behalf of voluntary organisations.

This means if you want to check someone's PVG record, VSDS can sign the application on your behalf.

If you enrol with VSDS you don't have to pay an annual subscription fee. They can also provide support, advice and training at no cost.

It's free to enrol with VSDS if your organisation is a QVO. You can contact VSDS on 01786 849777 or email them at

Register with Disclosure Scotland

Your organisation can register directly with Disclosure Scotland using the normal process.

Once it's registered, you can then apply to be authorised as a QVO. Disclosure Scotland might ask you to send them proof that you meet the requirements before it accepts your application.

If you register your QVO directly with Disclosure Scotland you'll need to pay a subscription fee, which is a minimum of £75 a year.

For more information on becoming a QVO by registering with Disclosure Scotland, email

Use another umbrella body

As well as registering directly with Disclosure Scotland or enrolling with VSDS, your QVO can sign up with a different umbrella body instead.

An umbrella body is a company that acts on your behalf to countersign applications to check PVG records.

If you use an umbrella body other than VSDS, PVG applications are free but the umbrella body may charge you an administration fee.

The umbrella body will also have to get approval from Disclosure Scotland before it can submit free checks on your behalf.