The Court of Session has ruled in favour of the SLCC in three separate "leave to appeal" cases, decided in the space of one week.
In each case, the court refused leave. The applicants had each argued that the SLCC was wrong to determine that their complaints were made outside the SLCC’s time limits. The court could find no error in law or process on the part of the SLCC in any of the cases.
SLCC interim director of public policy Mark Paxton commented: “We welcome the decisions of the court in these cases. We think that our time limits strike a fair balance between the rights of complainers and the profession. While assessing this part of our process can be complex, we think the decisions we take are robust and fair and we have rigorously defended them in the courts."
He added: "While it is particularly rare for us to be appearing in court three times in the same week, some unusual features of the our legislation allow this to happen. There are almost no other complaint handling bodies where the initial decision to accept or reject a complaint for further investigation is directly appealable to court, let alone to the highest civil court in the jurisdiction. Unfortunately, this means that all parties concerned often end up incurring costs due to appeals, increasingly from party litigants."