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Support for idea of specialist personal injury court

The Scottish Government has published details on the responses received to its consultation on proposals to restructure the way civil cases and summary criminal cases are dealt with by the courts in Scotland.

The Government apparently received 115 responses, and said that there was a very clear majority support for almost all proposals and concepts detailed in the consultation.

One of the proposals included in the consultation exercise was the creation of a specialist personal injury court with an all-Scotland jurisdiction.

This proposal was apparently supported by almost all groups that responded. A key comment was that this would ensure this specialist area is given more focus and that processes would be more efficient and decision making more consistent.

However, a key concern was raised relating to the issue of allowing access to automatic sanction for counsel, with some requests for this right in all cases. The location of the specialist personal injury court was also mentioned, with requests for one in Glasgow as well as Edinburgh.

There were some concerns over the resourcing of this court in terms of the number of specialist sheriffs who would be needed because of the potential for increased workloads. Allied to this, there were suggestions for greater use of technology and specialist training and recruitment of specialist sheriffs.

Support for civil jury trials came from most groups, with the exception of the insurance group (where there was no agreement), primarily because it would be unfair for litigants to be deprived of their entitlement to a jury trial. However, there were requests for access to automatic sanction for counsel, given the lack of experience most solicitors will have had in conducting civil jury trials.

Contains public sector information licensed under the Open Government Licence v1.0.

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