Update on Court Business as at 14 May 2020

14th May 2020

Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service (SCTS) have released an Update on Court Business to the Law Society of Scotland, which can be found here

The headlines are that, 'any return to a new normal will be on a phased basis' and it seems that the current arrangements for remote working (which can be found here for the Sheriff Court and here for the Court of Session) will be in place for some time yet.

No indicative timescales are to be provided, but it is confirmed that the return to business will be in 'three broad phases':

  • Phase 1: Lockdown – the current phase. Limited to urgent and necessary civil business in 10 hub courts and those cases outlined in the guidance, which can be progressed remotely.

  • Phase 2: Societal recovery - Government easing some restrictions, allowing the re-opening of closed courts - with the expectation that robust social distancing measures will necessitate an increase in digital and remote working, with few physical attendance hearings.

  • Phase 3: Move to “new” business as usual – with a form of social distancing likely to remain in place.

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