Amanda Millar, President of the Law Society of Scotland has responded to concerns raised by solicitors about attending court during the current Covid-19 lockdown.

“We want to ensure that the courts can continue to function safely during this period of lockdown. A number of solicitors have raised concerns with us about their ability to play a full and effective part in the court process when representing their clients as a result of the new measures that have been introduced this week.

“These concerns include a lack of suitable provision within some courts for consultation with clients, sanitisation supplies and inadequate sanitisation of court rooms between use, as well as clarity on the process for members to raise specific Covid-19 safety concerns. While it has been suggested that consultations should take place outwith the court building to maintain social distancing, there are unavoidable situations where consultations will require to take place shortly before or during a hearing and there currently seems to be no suitable provision for this.

“We do not expect anyone to put their health at risk. We are in contact with the Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service to alert them to the issues that have been raised with us and want to continue to take a collaborative approach to ensuring that all necessary health and safety measures can be put in place consistently across the court estate to protect those who are attending or work in our courts.

“It's vital that the courts continue to run during the pandemic and we have also written to the Minister for Public Health, Sport and Wellbeing to request that court practitioners are among those prioritised to receive the vaccine.”

Coronavirus update

We are working with partners in the Scottish legal sector and closely monitoring official advice and updates from Scottish Government and NHS to ensure that we are acting in accordance with the latest guidance to protect the health, safety and wellbeing of our employees, members and stakeholders.