Automatic legal aid for cases involving mental health issues, pleas in bar of trials, mental health proof, examination of facts, section 62 or 63 appeals

Automatic criminal legal aid covers the process, in solemn or summary proceedings, for the court to determine if your client is insane so that their trial cannot proceed.

It is available in relation to:

  • Any proceedings under solemn or summary procedure whereby the court determines your client is insane so that their trial cannot proceed
  • An examination of facts and the disposal of the case following such examination of facts [section 55 of the Criminal Procedure (Scotland) Act 1995]
  • Any appeal [section 62 or 63 of the 1995 Act]

Scope of work covered by automatic legal aid

There are no restrictions on the work that may be carried out under automatic legal aid.

Once it is apparent that the case is being treated as one involving insanity, necessary work may continue until a determination by the sheriff on this matter.

Any registered solicitor is entitled to act in these circumstances.

You are entitled to charge for your work in accordance with the ordinary detailed fees for criminal legal aid, with necessary outlays in addition.


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