Announcement of Business Changes
Coronavirus is now having a significant impact on the Scottish Justice system and this impact will accelerate in the coming weeks and months. The measures announced today aim to ensure that the public can maintain the trust and confidence that justice continues, that we protect the health of those using our courts and tribunals and that essential cases are dealt with to maintain public safety.
The Lord President and Lord Advocate have agreed to a programme of changes to criminal court business, which together with changes to civil court business, tribunal hearings and the work of the Office of the Public Guardian will provide a sustainable response during this outbreak.
The arrangements will support the public heath response by reducing the requirement for physical attendance at courts or hearings whenever possible, reducing the risk to staff, judiciary and all court users.
These arrangements prioritise essential or exceptional business and have been made with intent to support a managed recovery when that is possible.
The offices of the courts and tribunals and the Office of the Public Guardian will remain open to ensure that essential business can still be dealt with. However, unless individuals are required for proceedings they should not attend courts or tribunal premises.These arrangements will be reviewed regularly.
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