About the Bill
A Bill for an Act of the Scottish Parliament to make provision about success fee agreements; to make provision about expenses in civil litigation; to make provision about the offices of the Auditor of the Court of Session, the auditor of the Sheriff Appeal Court and the auditor of the sheriff court; and to make provision about the bringing of civil proceedings on behalf of a group of persons.
This Scottish Government Bill was introduced by the Cabinet Secretary for Justice, Michael Matheson MSP, on 1 June 2017.
Read the Civil Litigation (Expenses and Group Proceedings) (Scotland) Bill and accompanying documents.
The Justice Committee was designated lead committee for the Bill by the Parliamentary Bureau on 13 June 2017.
The Committee took formal evidence on the Bill at six meetings between September and November 2017.
On 5 September 2017, the Committee heard from Scottish Government officials assisting Ministers in taking the Bill through Parliament (“the Bill team”).
On 19 September 2017, the Committee heard from representatives of the Association of Personal Injury Lawyers, the Motor Accident Solicitors Society, and Thompsons Solicitors.
On 26 September 2017, the Committee head from two panels of witnesses. The first comprised representatives of the Faculty of Advocates, the Glasgow Bar Association, and the Law Society of Scotland. The second panel comprised representatives of the Association of British Insurers, the Association of British Travel Agents, the Forum of Insurance Lawyers, and the Medical and Dental Defence Union of Scotland.
On 31 October 2017, the Committee heard from Sheriff Principal Taylor, author of the independent report that preceded the Bill, and Elaine Samuel, Honorary Fellow at the University of Edinburgh and formerly the researcher for the Taylor Review team.
On 14 November 2017, the Committee heard from representatives of Accident Claims Scotland Ltd, the Legal Services Agency, Quantum Claims, and Which?, as well as Professor Alan Paterson from the University of Strathclyde.
On 21 November 2017, the Committee heard from the Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs, Annabelle Ewing.
The Stage 1 deadline is 19 January 2018.
The Committee issued a call for written evidence on 16 June 2017. The closing date for submissions was Friday 18 August 2017.
In response to the Convener's letter of 7 September 2017, the NHS Central Legal Office has provided the following data on the number of claims made against NHS health boards in Scotland between 2012-2013 and 2016-17. The data refers to all claims made, regardless of whether those claims were ultimately resolved or litigated in court.
Following the Committee's consideration of the Bill at Stage 2, Sheriff Principal Taylor wrote to the Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs, copied to the Committee, on amendments made relating to damages for future loss. A letter relating to these amendments was also sent from the Law Society of Scotland to the Convener. In the interests of transparency, both letters are published below.
The Committee published its Stage 1 Report to the Parliament on 21 December 2017.