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Inquiries into Fatal Accidents and Sudden Deaths etc. (Scotland) Act 2016

The inquiry

Section 21 – Inquiry to be conducted in public

64.Section 21 provides that an FAI should normally be open to the public. However subsection (2) allows the sheriff to order that an inquiry, or part of it, is to be held in private. The sheriff can make this order if the procurator fiscal or one of the participants applies for it, or may do so on his or her own initiative. The circumstances in which an FAI may be held in private have been left to the discretion of the sheriff, as the reasons may range widely from issues of national security to the need to protect children or other vulnerable persons.

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Text created by the Scottish Government 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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