Simple Procedure Special Claims Rules – taking time to get it right

Sep 13, 2017

Simple Procedure is a court process designed to provide a speedy, inexpensive and informal way to resolve civil disputes where the cash value is less than £5,000.

The Simple Procedure Rules were produced by the Scottish Civil Justice Council as two sets of rules: the Core Simple Procedure Rules and the Special Claims Rules for actions including personal injury, eviction, and aliment.

The core Simple Procedure Rules came into force in November 2016, with Special Claims Rules being scheduled for implementation in April, 2018.

The Making Justice Work Programme Board, which is coordinating the implementation of civil court reform, has agreed that the time frame for the introduction of the Special Claims Rules should be moved by at least six months to Autumn 2018 to enable a smooth transition and ensure the needs of court users are met.

The operation of the new Core Rules is currently being reviewed following feedback to identify areas where improvements can be made. As the Special Claims Rules are modelled on the Core Rules it makes sense to listen to the feedback, evaluate the Core Rules and incorporate any improvements before introducing the Special Case Rules.

The Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service (SCTS) recently held a series of workshops with representatives from the legal profession and consumer groups to help shape the development of a web-based portal, Civil Online. With the commencement of the Simple Procedure (Special Claims) Rules in 2018, the SCTS aims to have Civil Online in place to allow solicitors and members of the public to track case progress online, submit cases for registration, defend their cases, pay court fees and lodge documents into what will form the digital case file.

While Civil Online will initially be for Simple Procedure cases, working with the SCTS, we will make sure that future court rules for other case types will support the transaction of business through Civil Online.

The Council is also working with the SCTS to ensure the Special Claims Rules meet the needs of court users, and to finalise the date for implementation as soon as possible.  

 

 

 

 

 

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