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From the archives - August 2019

The Judicial Disappointments Board (a tale for wannabe sheriffs)

One solicitor finds the Judicial Appointments Board for Scotland process less than transparent and helpful, and wonders how applications can really be distinguished at the preliminary sift

Hiding in plain sight

Following the successful prosecution of members of a major modern slavery network, the author considers the scale of the problem and current recommendations to strengthen the law

Food for thought on the drug front

As official figures show drug related deaths in Scotland reaching a new high, the author invites the profession to debate whether decriminalisation of drug use, as in Portugal, is the way forward

The cruel sea: why Scottish salmon farming law must change

A US attorney warns that Scotland has 18 months to legislate new marine mammal protection standards or find the largest export market for Scottish salmon closed for business

Reading for pleasure

This month's selection of leisure reading, chosen by the Journal's book review editor

Opinion: Tahseen Jafry

Scotland’s Climate Change Bill is driven from the top for practical action on the ground. Is it enough to deliver a Climate-Just Scotland?

Book reviews

Reviews of Journal of Elder Law and Capacity; Trials: On Death Row in Pakistan (Buchanan)

Profile: Nicola Johnstone

Nicola Johnstone is one half of the Society’s Research team, whose projects include Profile of the Profession, social return on legal aid, vulnerable accused, traineeships, Brexit, and mental health

President's column

The change of Prime Minister has again raised the profile of Brexit; but this month we also mark the 70th anniversary of legal aid, and recognise all that it has meant to so many people

People on the move

Collected news of new appointments and practice changes

Managing compliance to drive legal practice success

In association with Insight Legal Software: the right IT will help law firms improve workflows while responding to ever-changing regulation

Of practices and people

How can smaller legal practices best secure their futures? We look at the issues facing those who seek to invest in bringing on new staff, drawing on experiences of practitioners from different firms

Making ADR mainstream

Current developments suggest an appetite for greater use of ADR within our civil court processes, and the Society’s Access to Justice Committee hosted a round table to consider the issues

The kids are alright?

With more methods of creating a family, new situations are arising in which child welfare issues have to be considered. But is the law coping? The author believes a more joined-up approach is needed

ACEs high, or low?

Critical reflections from the Scottish Child Law Centre on the adverse childhood experiences approach, particularly regarding traumatic events, recovery from trauma and even the term “ACEs-aware”

First lady of the law

As the centenary of the removal of the legal bar approaches, the author recounts the early attempts by women to become solicitors, how Madge Anderson finally achieved this, and subsequent events

Short sentences to PASS away?

Latest criminal cases, including absolute discharge; racial offences; football-related offences; notes of appeal; omnibus charges; plus comment on the raised presumption against short prison sentences

Supreme Court revises restrictive covenant test

Employment briefing: the long-established test for determining the severability of words in a restrictive covenant has been overruled and replaced by the UK Supreme Court

Needing a top-up?

Family briefing: a rare top-up child aliment claim has met with limited success due to incomplete and inaccurate vouching of “need” – and an adverse finding in expenses

What’s the (group) chat on privacy rights?

Human rights briefing: the Court of Session has recognised a common law right to privacy in respect of closed Whatsapp group messages, but not for police officers

Equality: where there’s a right…

Pensions briefing: some key developments addressing discrimination in survivors' benefits against same sex and unmarried couples, and the less generous provision proposed for the public sector

Scottish Solicitors' Discipline Tribunal

Reports relating to Richard Hutchison; Charles David Jackson; Jacqueline Marie Johnston; Raymond George Mallon; Ruben Valaydon Murdanaigum

Reforming the law of standard securities

The Scottish Law Commission has published its first Discussion Paper on Heritable Securities, on pre-default issues. This briefing explains its scope and the main proposals on which comment is invited

Lawyer for our rulers

A career in public service has culminated in this month’s in-house interviewee being recently appointed as Solicitor to the Scottish Government

QLTR cash balance form revised

New form sets out steps to take to trace owner of money held

Sign up for 2019 legal walks!

Teams invited to enter Glasgow and Edinburgh October events

Public policy highlights

Recent work of the Society's policy committees, including online harms; Public Health Scotland; houses in multiple occupation; short-term lets


The Scottish Government's consultation on regulation short-term lets, and the Society's response

Farming germinates Society-Faculty training day

In a new collaboration, the Society and Faculty of Advocates will offer CPD guidance on issues arising in relation to agricultural leases

SETS upgrade – an update

The Society’s Tax Law Subcommittee Convener and Property Law Convener advise on issues arising from Revenue Scotland’s SETS upgrade

SPA update

CPD latest from the Scottish Paralegal Association

New practice area: financial services – asset management

An additional practice area has been recognised under the accredited paralegal scheme

Resilience: your flexible friend

The Word of Gold: the defining quality of all great leaders is their ability to cope well with adversity

Master Policy renewal – what’s in the pipeline

A reminder of what you can expect in the run-up to the Master Policy renewal for November 2019, and the challenges in the PI market for this year and beyond

Ask Ash

Advice column: I recently assisted a colleague with a detailed piece of work, but he has claimed all the credit

Appreciation: William Denys Cathcart Andrews

Obituary of a former President of the Law Society of Scotland and partner in Shepherd & Wedderburn