asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what additional staff are being taken on in sheriff courts in Scotland to deal with divorce cases; in which courts these staff are being stationed; at what cost per annum; and on the basis of what estimate of the number of divorce actions raised in each year in the sheriff court.
Detailed consideration of the various aspects involved in assessing the effect of the introduction of divorce in the sheriff court is nearing completion, but until this has been done and the necessary consultations with those concerned have taken place, it is too early to be precise about staff numbers and costs in respect of individual courts. There is no reason to suppose that the estimate of a net total of approximately 16 additional staff given in the explanatory and financial memorandum to the Divorce Jurisdiction, Court Fees and Legal Aid (Scotland) Bill of last Session will be materially changed.
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland on what date the jurisdiction of sheriff courts in Scotland to hear actions of divorce will come into effect.
Until the rules of court, which will govern sheriff court divorce procedures, have been prepared, and approved by the Court of Session, and further discussions have taken place on staffing and additional shrieval assistance, it is not possible to fix the184W date when section 1 of the Divorce Jurisdiction, Court Fees and Legal Aid (Scotland) Act 1983 will be brought into force, and the sheriffs will have jurisdiction in actions for divorce. The date will, however, not be earlier that 1 April 1984.