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(1)Where a person claims that something done to a child was a physical punishment carried out in exercise of a parental right or of a right derived from having charge or care of the child, then in determining any question as to whether what was done was, by virtue of being in such exercise, a justifiable assault a court must have regard to the following factors—
(a)the nature of what was done, the reason for it and the circumstances in which it took place;
(b)its duration and frequency;
(c)any effect (whether physical or mental) which it has been shown to have had on the child;
(d)the child’s age; and
(e)the child’s personal characteristics (including, without prejudice to the generality of this paragraph, sex and state of health) at the time the thing was done.
(2)The court may also have regard to such other factors as it considers appropriate in the circumstances of the case.
(3)If what was done included or consisted of—
(a)a blow to the head;
(c)the use of an implement,
the court must determine that it was not something which, by virtue of being in exercise of a parental right or of a right derived as is mentioned in subsection (1), was a justifiable assault; but this subsection is without prejudice to the power of the court so to determine on whatever other grounds it thinks fit.
(4)In subsection (1), “child” means a person who had not, at the time the thing was done, attained the age of sixteen years.
(5)In section 12 of the Children and Young Persons (Scotland) Act 1937 (c. 37) (cruelty to persons under sixteen)—
(a)in subsection (1), the words “assaults,” and “assaulted,” are repealed; and
(b)subsection (7) is repealed.
In the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 (c. 36)—
(a)in section 44 (prohibition of publication of proceedings at children’s hearing), in subsection (1)—
(i)after the word “publish” there is inserted “any matter in respect of a case about which the Principal Reporter has from any source received information or”; and
(ii)in paragraph (a), for the words “any child concerned in the” there is substituted “the child concerned in, or any other child connected (in any way) with, the case,”; and
(b)in section 93 (interpretation of Part II), in subsection (2)—
(i)in paragraph (a), after the word “Part” there is inserted “and section 44”; and
(ii)in paragraph (b), for the words “Chapters 2 and” there is substituted “Chapter 2 (except section 44) and Chapter”.
(1)Where the Principal Reporter has received information about a case in which it appears that an offence has been committed by a child, the Principal Reporter may provide any information about the case as is mentioned in subsection (2) to any person mentioned in subsection (3) if (and only if)—
(a)the information is requested by the person; and
(b)the Principal Reporter is satisfied that—
(i)the provision of the information would not be detrimental to the best interests of the child concerned in, or any other child connected (in any way) with, the case; and
(ii)it is appropriate in the circumstances of the case to provide the information.
(2)The information is information as to—
(a)what action the Principal Reporter has taken in the case; and
(b)any disposal of the case,
in so far as the information relates to the offence.
(3)The persons are—
(a)any person against whom the offence appears to have been committed or, where that person is a child, any relevant person; and
(b)any other person or class of persons, subject to such conditions, as may be prescribed.
(4)In this section—
“child”means a person who has not attained the age of eighteen years;
“the Principal Reporter”has the same meaning as it has in Part II of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 (c. 36);
“relevant person”in relation to a child means—
any parent enjoying parental responsibilities or parental rights under Part I of that Act;
any person in whom parental responsibilities or rights are vested by, under or by virtue of that Act; and
any person who appears to be a person who ordinarily (and other than by reason only of that person’s employment) has charge of, or control over, the child.
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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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