HC Deb 24 February 1982 vol 18 cc859-60
31. Lord James Douglas-Hamilton

asked the Solicitor-General for Scotland whether he has any plans to meet the Scottish Law Commission to consider the issue of warrant sales.

The Solicitor-General for Scotland

The Scottish Law Commission is already working on a report covering those aspects of the law of diligence, including warrant sales, covered by the five consultative memoranda published in October 1980. I welcome the priority that the Scottish Law Commission is according to this report. In view of the priority already being accorded to the preparation of the report I do not consider there to be any need for me to meet the Scottish Law Commission to urge that any greater attention be given to the issue of warrant sales.

Lord James Douglas-Hamilton

May I also warmly congratulate my hon. Friend the Solicitor-General on his first day of questions? May I request him to inform the Scottish Law Commission that the report's early completion would be very welcome?

The Solicitor-General for Scotland

I am grateful to my hon. Friend. I assure him that the completion of the report is the Scottish Law Commission's first priority. It is also important that there should not be piecemeal reform of the law of diligence in Scotland. I hope that we shall see a complete report by the Scottish Law Commission on this very important matter in the near future.

Mr. Dewar

Although I accept that the report has now been given high priority, will the Solicitor-General accept that since time immemorial Ministers have said that it is top of the Scottish Law Commission's shopping list? Will he give us some idea when the House will have a substantive comprehensive report on which it can consider action? Otherwise, we shall return to the subject month after month at Scottish Question Time. That is not in the interests of any hon. Member.

The Solicitor-General for Scotland

I appreciate the hon. Gentleman's point, but I assure him that the report is at the top of the list. The hon. Gentleman will remember that the law on incest was being investigated by the Scottish Law Commission, and the report has now been completed. The law of diligence and its reform in Scotland is definitely the top priority for the Scottish Law Commission.