Recommendation requests do not fall under the children’s duty scheme. Requests can apply to relevant persons and not just children. Automatic children’s legal aid is not available where you agree to act in these circumstances.

In terms of Rule 50(7) and Rule 61(1)(d) and (e) of the Children’s Hearings (Scotland) Act 2011 (Rules of Procedure in Children’s Hearings) Rules 2013 where a pre-hearing panel or children’s hearing determines that it is:

  • Necessary that the child or relevant person is represented by a solicitor or counsel
  • Unlikely that the child or relevant person will arrange to be represented by a solicitor or counsel

Then, the Reporter will notify us of the details of such a determination via a secure e-mail transmission. We will contact a local registered solicitor to see if they would be willing both to contact and act for the child or relevant person under children’s legal assistance.

Where we receive a rule 50 or 61 notification from the Reporter, we will contact the solicitor firm on the duty scheme straight away. The duty firm contacted are not under any obligation to agree to make contact with the child or relevant person. If the duty firm tells us that it does not want to make such contact, we will look to the next duty firm on the list until support is secured.

Eligibility tests

Automatic legal aid is not available here. Such a child or relevant person will be subject to the usual eligibility tests for representation at a hearing. You can only begin to receive payment once you have satisfied yourself that your client is eligible and wants to be represented. Unlike the Duty Scheme, you will not be guaranteed payment.

Where a subsequent application for children’s legal assistance is made to us in these circumstances, we will take into consideration the determination by the panel when applying the effective participation merits test for ABWOR.

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