If the child is under 12 and applying themselves, non-qualified staff should refer to you to decide if the child can give instructions.
Non-qualified staff should refer to you for a decision on whether these resources should be taken into account.
This is classed as two persons living together as husband and wife or in a relationship that has the characteristics of the relationship between husband and wife [section 42 of the Legal Aid (Scotland) Act 1986]. This covers spouses and civil partners and those living together in relationships with the characteristics of spouses or civil partners.
The resources of the couple must be aggregated unless:
In order for the resources of a partner to be disregarded on the grounds that the partner holds a contrary interest in the case it must be shown that the partner is seeking a different outcome from the applicant. This is not the same as where a partner may have a different interest in the proceedings, for example, where the partner may be called upon to give evidence which is detrimental to themselves or to the applicant’s case but nonetheless he/she seeks the same outcome as the applicant.
In considering if aggregation should not occur because the couple are not living together, it must be shown that the relationship is at an end.
Some periods of physical separation take place without ending a relationship. For example:
In each of these examples, couples may consider their relationship to be on-going despite their physical separation.
When deciding if aggregation of resources should take place, we will consider many factors. Essentially what is to be established falls under two broad headings:
The principal factors that we take into account are:
Non-qualified staff should refer to you to decide how much capital to include in the assessment.
Has the applicant any assets, including money, which relates to the problem on which they are seeking advice? If yes, non-qualified staff should refer to a solicitor to decide whether the asset must be included in the assessment. For an explanation of “subject matter of dispute”, see the Keycard