Judicial Recusals

Declinature of jurisdiction, also referred to as recusal, refers to the act of a judicial office holder abstaining from participation in legal proceedings due to a conflict of interest or when his or her impartiality might reasonably be impugned. The table below records those cases in which a senator, temporary judge, sheriff principal, sheriff or summary sheriff grants or refuses a formal motion for recusal in open court. With effect from 1 February 2018 the register was extended to include members of the Scottish Tribunals.  

DATE

NAME OF JUDGE (AND COURT/TRIBUNAL) 

CASE NAME (AND/OR REF)

MOTION BY & REASON 

8/1/18

Sheriff Montgomery 

(Ayr Sheriff Court)

James McColm v Meiqin McColm (F138/16)

**Ex proprio motu; Knowledge of pursuer's family background

19/1/18

Sheriff Fleetwood

(Inverness Sheriff Court)

Ashwin Bantwal v Vrishali Shenoy (INV-SM18-17)

Ex proprio motu; Sheriff previously recused himself in another case involving the parties, having earlier presided over a jury trial involving parties

1/2/18

Lord Justice Clerk

(Court of Session)

Petition to the Nobile Officium by Derek Cooney (P115/17)

Petitioner's motion refused; no valid objection stated

6/2/18

Moira Clark

(Mental Health Tribunal for Scotland)

8212/SO63*

Ex proprio motu;Personal conflict of interest

12/2/18

Sheriff A Brown

(Dundee Sheriff Court)

HMA v M Islam and S Smekramuddin (DUN2017-4074)

Ex proprio motu;Witness known to Sheriff

23/2/18

Dr Ross Hamilton

 (Mental Health Tribunal for Scotland)

8709/S063*

Ex proprio motu; Patient known to the Medical Member, having treated a relative

27/2/18

Graham Harding

(Housing and Property Chamber)

RP/18/0148

Ex proprio motu; Party is a client of the tribunal member's firm

6/3/18

Dr Ross Hamilton

(Mental Health Tribunal for Scotland)

7987/S1012b*

Ex proprio motu; Previously provided second opinion on same patient

15/2/18

Linda Reid

(Housing and Property Chamber)

EV/17/0480

Ex proprio motu; Potential conflict of interest as the tribunal member has a professional relationship with certain partners and associates of the agents for one of the parties

20/2/18

Nicola Weir

(Housing and Property Chamber)

RP/18/0150

Ex proprio motu; One of the parties is the tribunal member's family solicitor

28/2/18

Ian Campbell Matson

  (Mental Health Tribunal for Scotland)

N/A

Ex proprio motu; Work as locum at same hospital

7/3/18

Andrew Upton

(Housing and Property Chamber)

EV/18/0250* and CV/18/0251*

Ex proprio motu; The tribunal member's firm acts for the parent company of one of the parties

13/3/18

Dr James Deans

(Mental Health Tribunal for Scotland)

9142/S095*

Ex proprio motu; Previously treated patient on compulsory basis

21/3/18

Sheriff Principal Lewis

  (Sheriff Appeal Court)

Gabriel Politakis v RBS & Others

Ex proprio motu; Previously presided in appeal involving appellant

23/3/18

Sheriff A Anwar

(Glasgow Sheriff Court)

GLW-F417-13

Ex proprio motu; Sheriff personally known to a witness

3/4/18

Graham Harding

(Housing and Property Chamber)

PF/18/0233

Ex proprio motu; conflict of interest

9/4/18

Mark Andrew

(Housing and Property Chamber)

RP/18/0162

Ex proprio motu; Tribunal member known to tenants involved in the case

9/4/18

Sheriff Fleetwood

(Inverness Sheriff Court)

PF v Jade Brown (INV 2017-1048)

Joint motion granted; Sheriff was a longstanding agent of a key witness

17/4/18

Gillian Buchanan (Housing and Property Chamber)

RP/16/0210

Ex proprio motu; Respondent has conmnection to member's firm

2/4/18

Lady Paton

(Court of Session)

XA88/16

Motion by party litigant refused; no good reason for recusal

TBC

Patricia Ann Pryce

(Housing and Property Chamber)

RP/16/0210

Ex proprio motu; Conflict

25/4/18

Gillian Buchanan

(Housing and Property Chamber)

RP/18/0602

Ex proprio motu; Previously acted for landlord

27/4/18

Graham Harding

(Housing and Property Chamber)

RT/18/0586

Ex proprio motu; One of the parties a client of the firm the applicant works for

27/4/18

Gillian Buchanan

(Housing and Property Chamber)

RT/18/0586

Ex proprio motu; Respondent known to applicant as client of Member's firm

3/4/18

Sheriff Caldwell

(Falkirk Sheriff Court)

SCS/2018-035424

Sheriff heard evidence in a trial with same accused and witnesses 

11/5/18

David Preston

(Housing and Property Chamber)

PF/17/0315

Ex proprio motu; factor known to applicant

11/5/18

Sheriff Fleetwood

(Inverness Sheriff Court)

A v B*

Respondent's motion granted; The sheriff, having previously made a Permancence Order in respect of the child, declined jurisdiction to hear the adoption proof

14/5/18

Ewan Miller

(Housing and Property) Chamber

CV/18/0981

Ex proprio motu; Tribunal member's firm acts for on eof the parties

14/5/18

Susan Napier

(Housing and Property Chamber)

PF/18/0240

Ex proprio motu; Tribunal member's worked for the housing association party when the development concerned was built

23/5/18

Elizabeth Currie

(Housing and Property Chamber)

CV/18/0599

Ex proprio motu; Tribunal member works for the local authority and is responsible for landlord registration

23/5/18

Jacqui Taylor

(Housing and Property Chamber)

EV/18/1075 and  CV/18/1077

Ex proprio motu; Tribunal member's firm has acted for one of the parties

24/5/18

Jim Bauld

(Housing and Property Chember)

RP/18/0961

Ex proprio motu; Tribunal member's firm instructed by one the parties

29/5/18

Andrew Cowan

(Housing and Property Chember)

CV/18/1130 and EV/18/1127

Ex proprio motu; Tribunal member's firm acts for the applicant

29/5/18

Jim Bauld

(Housing and Property Chamber)

PF/18/0571

Ex proprio motu; Tribunal member's firm acts for the landlord

4/6/18

Jim Bauld

(Housing and Property Chamber)

LM/18/1073

Ex proprio motu; Tribunal member's firm acts for factor

5/6/18

Rory Cowan

(Housing and Property Chamber)

EV/18/1078

Ex proprio motu; Tribunal member previously dealt with one of the parties

12/6/18

Sheriff Cook

(Edinburgh Sheriff Court)

PF v Josh Harkness

Defence motion granted; Sheriff had presided over a trial involving same accused and complainer

11/7/18

Lord Brailsford

(Court of Session)

Margaret Paterson v SCCR  (P376/17)

Ex proprio motu; Lord Brailsford was one of a three-judge panel who had refused the petitioner leave to appeal the criminal conviction at second sift. The reason for refusing leave was germaine to the challenge raised in the judicial review.

31/7/18

Helen Miller

(Additional Support Needs Tribunal)

AR/18/0006

Case indirectly involves the school attended by tribunal member's son

27/7/18

Sheriff Ward

(Dunoon Sheriff Court) 

PF v Gavin Murphy

Defence motion refused; Sheriff previously dealt with a children's social work referral in relation to the accused where the complainers were witnesses

2/8/18

Andrew Cowan

(Housing and Property Chamber)

PR/18/1159

Tribunal member's firm acted for the landlord's agents in separate matters

14/8/18

Andrew Cowan

(Housing and Property Chamber)

RA/18/1621

Potential conflic of interest

19/9/18

Sheriff Fleming

(Glasgow Sheriff Court)

National Westminster Bank Plc v Morag Horsey (GLW-B885-18)

Ex proprio motu; prior professional conflict

19/9/18

Sheriff Hamilton QC

  (Dumbarton Sheriff Court)

DBN-SG155-18 Amir Smoli v John Currie

Ex proprio motu; Sheriff knows the pursuer 

21/9/18

Carolyn Hirst

(Housing and Property Chamber)

EV/18/1740

Ex proprio motu; Tribunal member has a conflict of interest, having worked as an independent consultant for one of the parties

28/9/18

Sheriff Dickson 

(Tain Sheriff Court)

TAI-F43-13

Ex proprio motu; The Sheriff has knowledge of one of the parties in the conext of criminal proceedings

12/10/18

Alison Kelly

(Housing and Property Chamber)

CV/18/1659 and PR/18/1408

Ex proprio motu; Tribnual member knows the letting agent who is acting for the applicant

13/12/18

Temporary Judge Norman Ritchie QC

  (Glasgow High Court)

HMA v Craig Tonnar (IND 2018/1312

Ex proprio motu; Material placed before the court may reasonably have impugned the judge's decision on sentence.

13/12/18

Sheriff Berry

(Wick Sheriff Court)

PF v William Fernie

Ex proprio motu; Accused is well known to the Sheriff

30/1/19

Suzanne Sinclair

(Mental Health Tribunal for Scotland)

08500/S063 

Ex proprio motu; Psychiatrist who completed a medical report for a CTO application is the Tribunal member's Doctor.

4/2/19

Suzanne Sinclair

(Mental Health Tribunal for Scotland)

08622/S050

Ex proprio motu; Appeal against a Short Term Detention Order made by a Doctor who was formerly the Tribunal member's Doctor 

8/2/19

Lord Bannatyne

(Court of Session)

Agilisys Ltd

v

CGI IT UK Ltd

(CA 55/17)

Defender's motion granted; The Lord Ordinary, having made findings in respect of the credibility and reliability of some of the defender's witnesses in the first proof, and being mindful of a real possibility of the perception of bias arising therefrom, recused himself from hearing the second proof, at which some of the same witnesses would again give evidence.

18/2/19

Sheriff Summers 

(Aberdeen Sheriff

Court)

Blair Nimmo

v

Richard Dennis

(SQ60-18)

Ex proprio motu; Sheriff knows parties involved in the case

27/2/19

Sheriff Anwar

(Glasgow Sheriff

Court)

David Grier

v

Chief

Constable,

Police

Scotland

Pursuer's motion granted; The sheriff, having previously intimated to parties that recusal may be necessary, declined jurisdiction in order to avoid the appearance of apparent bias, given that another sheriff at Glasgow was listed among the potential witnesses. 

5/3/19

Rory Cowan

(Housing and Property Chamber)

 

EV/18/3486

and

CV/18/3487

Ex proprio motu; case involves a former client of the Tribunal member.

7/3/19

Suzanne Sinclair

(Mental Health Tribunal for Scotland)

09471/S063 

Ex proprio motu; Doctor who completed a medical report for a CTO application is the Tribunal member's Doctor.

12/3/19

Simone Sweeney

(Housing and Property Chamber)

PF/18/2240

Ex proprio motu; Tribunal member is an employee of one of the parties

19/3/19

Jim Bauld

(Housing and Property Chamber)

RP/19/0110

Ex proprio motu; Tribunal member is an employee of the fim which acts for the letting agent party


**Of the judge’s own accord