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Judicial Appointments Board for Scotland publishes annual report

3 October 2017

The Judicial Appointments Board for Scotland has revised its recruitment procedures following recommendations of its Quality Assurance Group, its newly published annual report for 2016-17 reveals.

Chaired by James McNeill QC (and previously until her appointment as Lord Justice Clerk by Lady Dorrian), the group reviewed the appointment of five senators in 2016, and its recommendations, accepted by the board, included:

  • an interview panel size reduced from six to four, to bring it into line with other court appointments. The selection panel would remain a six person panel;
  • a reworded case management criterion for all appointment rounds to encourage applicants to provide evidence of both managing caseload, and managing their own cases;
  • for all appointment rounds, a redrafted written work section in the guidance note covering lengthy pieces of written work submitted;
  • for all appointment rounds, legal references would no longer be requested. Judicial references would continue to be sought for senior appointments;
  • the time for the general interview would be reduced from one hour to 50 minutes, to bring it into line with all other appointment rounds;
  • for all appointment rounds feedback following sift would be by generic letter, but the board would retain the option of offering tailored feedback in competitions with smaller numbers of applicants.

The report records that no female applicants sought the position of Sheriff Principal of Glasgow & Strathkelvin Sheriffdom, and the board would discuss this with the Lord President.

Processes for handling large numbers of applicants and interviewees for recruitment of summary sheriffs have also been reviewed.

Click here to view the full report.


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