In terms of regulation 6 of the Children’s Legal Assistance (Scotland) Regulations 2013 children’s legal aid is available in the following appeals to the Sheriff Appeal Court and Court of Session

  • An appeal to the sheriff appeal court or the Court of Session against a determination or decision of a sheriff
  • An appeal to the sheriff appeal court or the Court of Session against a decision of a sheriff in an appeal against a relevant person determination
  • an appeal to the sheriff appeal court or the Court of Session against a decision of a sheriff in an appeal relating to a contact or permanence
  • An appeal to the Court of Session against a determination or decision of the Sheriff Appeal Court
  • An appeal to the Court of Session against a decision of the Sheriff Appeal Court in an appeal against a relevant person determination
  • An appeal to the Court of Session against a decision of the Sheriff Appeal Court

in an appeal relating to a contact or permanence order

  • An appeal to the Sheriff Appeal Court against a determination of a review, or the making of an order, by a sheriff

All references to the Sheriff Principal in the 2013 Regulations, the Legal Aid (Scotland) Act 1986 and Children’s Hearings (Scotland) Act 2011 should now be read as ‘Sheriff Appeal Court’. Such appeals are by stated case on a point of law or in respect of any procedural irregularity. It is no longer competent to appeal to the Sheriff Principal.

An application for children’s legal aid for these appeal proceedings should be made using the “Sheriff Principal/Court of Session” tab.

This guidance does not apply to appeals against a decision of a children’s hearing which are sheriff court applications for children’s legal aid and are dealt with in separate guidance.

Appeals to the sheriff appeal court and Court of Session can be at the instance of:

  • A child
  • Relevant person
  • Deemed relevant person
  • Section 126 individual (in certain appeals only)
  • Your client seeking relevant person status or where they have had their relevant person status taken away from them (in certain appeals only).

The reporter may also appeal and these persons above can apply for legal aid to oppose such an appeal.

Such an appeal must be made within 28 days of the decision in question.

There is no specific time limit for applying for legal aid but it is recommended that such applications are made as soon as possible. If we have granted special urgency for any steps, such as drafting the application to the sheriff to state his/her case, then you must submit an application within 28 days of the commencement of the urgent work. We will continue an application for legal aid if we require further information or documentation such as the draft or final stated case.

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