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

The inquiry

Section 25 – Expenses

68.This provision expressly removes any power of the court to award legal expenses in an FAI. It therefore overrides section 19(1). The effect of this section is unconnected with the payment of the expenses of witnesses etc. about which FAI rules may be made (see section 36(2)(i)).

69.The decision to hold an FAI is taken by the Lord Advocate acting in the public interest. The rule making power in the 2016 Act permits rules to be made to give sheriffs sufficient case management powers to be able to deal with vexatious behaviour as it arises without the need to award expenses.   For example, FAI rules will empower the sheriff to control proceedings through the use of minutes of agreed evidence, powers to regulate the conduct and management of proceedings and the regulation of witnesses and evidence.

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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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