Making Justice Work: Courts Reform (Scotland) Bill
The key reforms include:
The introduction of a new judicial tier in the sheriff courts to be known as "summary sheriffs" who would deal with lower level civil and criminal cases
Extending the exclusive competence of the sheriff court to cases where the sum sued for is less than or equal to £150,000 (the current limit is £5,000)
The introduction of a new national sheriff appeal court to deal with civil and less serious criminal appeals
The setting up of a specialist personal injury court that would have jurisdiction across Scotland and would be a centre of expertise in this area.
The civil court structure has not been reviewed for several decades and the Government considers that reform is required to make sure that cases are dealt with at the appropriate level in order to avoid unnecessary delays and expense.
DWF Biggart Baillie has submitted its response to the consultation paper. The responses received are now being analysed and enquiries with the Scottish Government suggest that the intention is to publish that analysis in August this year, well in advance of the introduction of legislation to give effect to the reforms. It is currently anticipated that such legislation would be introduced early in 2014.
For further information, please contact David Stevenson, Partner on +44 (0) 141 228 8124
This information is intended as a general discussion surrounding the topics covered and is for guidance purposes only. It does not constitute legal advice and should not be regarded as a substitute for taking legal advice. DWF is not responsible for any activity undertaken based on this information.