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Work shadowing scheme opens to let lawyers see inside judicial role

20 August 2018

A new judicial work shadowing scheme, giving qualified legal professionals an opportunity to spend up to three days observing the work of a judicial office holder, has been launched by Lord Carloway, the Lord President and head of the Scottish judiciary.

The purpose of the scheme is to encourage legal practitioners to consider applying for judicial office.

It will provide an environment in which qualified solicitors, solicitor advocates and advocates can establish what skills and experiences are needed to support their application for judicial office, share issues which they perceive as inhibiting them from applying – such as concerns of work/life balance, self-confidence, self-perception – and receive confidential advice, support and guidance from a mentor judge.

Learning from someone with greater understanding of the judiciary, they will also be able to identify areas where further development and experience is required and consider how these may be acquired, and decide whether or not taking up judicial office is an option they might want to pursue.

The three days of shadowing can take place over a six month period, depending on the availability of cases and the judicial office holder to be shadowed.

The scheme is also open to serving sheriffs and sheriffs principal who have an interest in applying to be a Senator of the College of Justice.

Lord Carloway commented: “I welcome this scheme and hope that it serves to provide an insight into the working lives of a judge or sheriff and demystify what the roles involve. In particular, I hope that it will capture the interest of potential candidates well in advance of the date upon which they might consider applying for judicial office.”

Click here to access the scheme guidance and application form.


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