All about Scotland Sheriif Court's
The majority of criminal and civil cases in Scotland are heard in the sheriff court. Most sheriffs are resident to a particular court, but some float between courts, sitting wherever they are required.
Sheriffs can deal with any crimes except murder, rape and treason. There are two types of criminal procedure in Scotland: solemn procedure (for more serious offences) and summary procedure. In solemn cases, when a trial is held against a person accused of a crime, a jury decides the verdict. In summary cases the sheriff, sitting alone, decides the verdict.
Maximum penalties available to a sheriff are set by law. See the Scottish Sentencing Council’s website for more information on maximum sentences and the range of available sentences.
In civil cases, all cases with a value of £100,000 or less must be heard in the sheriff court, however, there is no upper limit to the value of the cases that can be heard here. Sheriffs deal with many complex and difficult cases, including those involving debt, compensation, contract disputes, bankruptcy, company liquidation, eviction and anti-social behaviour. They hear almost all family actions, such as divorce, child welfare and adoptions, and preside over appeals or disputes from children’s hearings. More information is available on the Scottish Courts and Tribunals website.
There are many different legal appeals and applications made to sheriffs including those in relation to licensing, gaming, gun control, and adults with incapacity.
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