Office of Summary Sheriff Vacancies

The Judicial Appointments Board for Scotland invites applications from suitably qualified individuals who wish to be considered for appointment to the office of Summary Sheriff in early May 2016.

The Judicial Office for Scotland have informed the Board that there are 12 resident vacancies in the following courts: three based at Aberdeen, one based at Airdrie, one based at Ayr, one based at Falkirk, five based at Glasgow and one based at Hamilton. This competition is for these 12 vacancies only.

The Office of Summary Sheriff document, provided by the Judicial Office for Scotland, provides applicants with information about the role. Applicants will have a high level of legal knowledge and experience, and a high level of skills and competence in interpretation and application of the law, together with demonstrable evidence of a good ability and motivation to acquire and apply knowledge of the law in unfamiliar areas. Those appointed will be expected to cover the full jurisdiction as specified in the Courts Reform (Scotland) Act 2014.  At present, the functions of the Lord President will be exercised instead by the Lord Justice Clerk.

Before applying applicants should be aware that the Lord Justice Clerk expects a summary sheriff appointed to a resident vacancy to complete a five-year minimum period before the summary sheriff may seek a transfer to another post. The Lord Justice Clerk has informed the Board that it is his expectation that a person appointed to these vacancies must ensure that they reside within a one-hour car journey of their base court. If the recommended candidate does not meet this requirement on appointment, the Lord Justice Clerk would issue a formal requirement under section 14(2) of the Sheriff Court (Scotland) Act 1971 if necessary. Removal to comply with this requirement on appointment would be at the applicant’s own cost. Before applying applicants will wish to read section 1 of the Guidance Note for Applicants and Referees.

Applicants must have been legally qualified for at least 10 years. A person who is legally qualified is either an advocate or a solicitor. To be eligible for appointment a solicitor must have his or her name on the Roll.

Selection is made solely on merit. The Board encourages and welcomes applications from the widest possible range of eligible individuals. The Board would particularly welcome applications from protected groups covered by the Equality Act 2010 such as women, people with a disability or those from an ethnic minority background.

Further information, including eligibility criteria, can be obtained  from our website, or from the Secretary to the Board, Judicial Appointments Board for Scotland, Thistle House, 91 Haymarket Terrace, Edinburgh EH12 5HE(DX: ED29, Edinburgh), Telephone 0131 528 5101. 

Applications should be completed and submitted no later than 5.00 pm on Wednesday 8th July 2015.  On present plans, the interviews are due to take place between 17th and 23rd November 2015, in Edinburgh.