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After section 11 of the 1971 Act there is inserted—
(1)The Scottish Ministers may, under this section, appoint persons to act as sheriffs, and persons so appointed shall be known as “part-time sheriffs”.
(2)In making those appointments, the Scottish Ministers shall comply with such requirements as to procedure and consultation as may be prescribed by regulations made by them.
(3)A person shall not be appointed a part-time sheriff unless qualified under section 5(1) of this Act to be appointed to the office of sheriff.
(4)A part-time sheriff shall, without the necessity of receiving a commission in that behalf, be entitled to exercise in every sheriffdom the jurisdiction and powers attaching to the office of sheriff.
(5)The number of persons holding appointments as part-time sheriffs shall not, at any one time, exceed 60 or such other number as may be fixed in substitution by order made by the Scottish Ministers.
(6)A part-time sheriff shall be subject to such instructions, arrangements and other provisions as fall to be made under this Act by the sheriff principal of the sheriffdom in which the part-time sheriff is sitting.
(7)In the performance of their functions under this Act, sheriffs principal shall together have regard to the desirability of securing that every part-time sheriff—
(a)is given the opportunity of sitting on not fewer than 20 days; and
(b)does not sit for more than 100 days,
in each successive period of 12 months beginning with the day of the part-time sheriff’s appointment as such.
(8)The Scottish Ministers shall pay to part-time sheriffs such remuneration and allowances as they determine.
(1)An appointment as a part-time sheriff shall, subject to subsections (2) to (4) below, last for 5 years.
(2)A part-time sheriff may resign at any time by giving notice to that effect to the Scottish Ministers.
(3)An appointment of a person as a part-time sheriff shall not extend beyond the day when the person reaches the age of 70.
(4)A part-time sheriff’s appointment shall come to an end upon the part-time sheriff’s being removed from office under section 11C of this Act.
(5)A part-time sheriff whose appointment comes to an end by operation of subsection (1) above may be reappointed and, except in the circumstances set out in subsection (6) below, shall be reappointed.
(6)The circumstances mentioned in subsection (5) above are that—
(a)the part-time sheriff has declined that reappointment;
(b)the part-time sheriff is aged 69 or over;
(c)a sheriff principal has made a recommendation to the Scottish Ministers against the reappointment;
(d)the part-time sheriff has not sat for a total of 50 or more days in the preceding five year period; or
(e)the Scottish Ministers have, since the part-time sheriff was last appointed, made an order under section 11A(5) of this Act reducing the number of persons who may hold appointment as part-time sheriffs.
(7)A part-time sheriff whose appointment comes to an end by resignation under subsection (2) above may be reappointed.
(8)The provisions of section 11A and this section of this Act apply to a reappointment under subsections (5) and (7) above as they apply to an appointment.
(9)A part-time sheriff who is a solicitor in practice shall not carry out any function as a part-time sheriff in a sheriff court district in which his or her main place of business as such solicitor is situated.
(1)A part-time sheriff may be removed from office by and only by order of the tribunal constituted by and under subsection (3) below (“the tribunal”).
(2)The tribunal may order the removal from office of a part-time sheriff only if, after investigation carried out at the request of the Scottish Ministers, it finds that the part-time sheriff is unfit for office by reason of inability, neglect of duty or misbehaviour.
(3)The tribunal shall consist of the following three members, who shall be appointed by the Lord President of the Court of Session—
(a)either a Senator of the College of Justice or a sheriff principal (who shall preside);
(b)a person who is, and has been for at least ten years, legally qualified within the meaning of section 5(1) of this Act; and
(c)one other person.
(4)Regulations, made by the Scottish Ministers—
(a)may make provision enabling the tribunal, at any time during an investigation, to suspend a part-time sheriff from office and providing as to the effect and duration of such suspension; and
(b)shall make such further provision as respects the tribunal as the Scottish Ministers consider necessary or expedient, including provision for the procedure to be followed by and before it.
(1)Regulations under section 11A or section 11C and orders under section 11A of this Act shall be made by statutory instrument.
(2)No such regulations or order shall be made unless laid in draft before, and approved by a resolution of, the Scottish Parliament.”.
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Text created by the Scottish Executive department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes were introduced in 1999 and accompany all Acts of the Scottish Parliament except those which result from Budget Bills
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