Simple Procedure 


What is an application?

As your claim progresses, you may want to ask the sheriff to order that something specific is done in the case, for example to help progress or to settle the claim. You can do this by making an application to the court.

What type of applications can be made to the court?

Some examples of specific types of application that can be made are set out in Part 9 of the Rules. These include applications to:

  • Pause or restart a case: (pausing a case means to temporarily suspend the progress of a case; restarting a case means resuming the progress of a paused case)
  • Add an additional respondent to the case (a person who has not been named by the claimant in the Claim Form would use this application to ask the sheriff to allow them to be a respondent in the case)
  • Amend the Claim Form or Response Form
  • Abandon a claim
  • Allow the representative of a party who dies or becomes legally incapacitated before a sheriff decides the case, to represent that party (this can only be done where the representative asserts a right to represent the party or the party’s estate. It is referred to below as an Application to Represent a Party.)
  • Recall the decision of the sheriff (you would use this to ask the court to cancel a decision of the sheriff – this is not the same as an appeal, and can only be used in certain circumstances). Please refer to Recall of the Decision and Appeals’.

There may of course be other specific things you want to ask the court to order.

How do I make an application?

An application to:

An application must be sent to the other party. A copy of the application must also be sent to the court, along with evidence that the application was sent to the other party (for example a postal receipt or copy of an email).

All types of applications can be sent to the court using Civil Online.

An application to add an additional respondent to the case is made by completing an Additional Respondent Application (Form 9C). The application must also have a draft Response Form (Form 4A) attached to it and must be sent to the court.

You must set out clearly the reasons for any application that you make.

Part 9 of the simple procedure rules explains about applications.

How do I object to an application?

To object to an application, you must complete Part D of the application form that you received, within 10 days of it being sent, setting out the objection and sending the application form to the court.

What can the sheriff do when considering the application?

The sheriff will consider the application and any objections that may have been sent to the court. The sheriff may then do one of three things:

  • Grant the application
  • Refuse the application, or
  • Order both parties to appear at a discussion in court, where the sheriff will consider whether the order requested in the application should be made.

There are different things, however, that the sheriff can do when considering an Additional Respondent Application and an Abandonment Notice. These are described below.

What can the sheriff do when considering an Additional Respondent Application?

Where an application is made by a person to become an additional respondent in a case, the sheriff can grant the application without there being a discussion in court. However, if the sheriff is considering refusing the application they must order a discussion in court.

If the sheriff orders a discussion in court, the person who made the application will be sent a notice informing them of the date, time and place of the discussion.

A copy of the application, draft response form and notice informing the person making the application of the discussion, must be served on all parties in the case. Service must be done by a solicitor or sheriff officer.  Parties cannot do this themselves. Solicitors and sheriff officers will charge a fee for this service.

If the sheriff grants the application, they must give the person making the application orders that allow them to participate in the case as a respondent.

Part 9 of the simple procedure rules explains about applications.

Part 18 of the simple procedure rules explains how to formally serve a document in Scotland

Part 19 of the simple procedure rules explains how to formally serve a document outside Scotland.

What will the sheriff do with an Abandonment Notice?

When the court receives the Abandonment Notice, the sheriff will give parties written orders which may dismiss the claim. They may also do one of three further things:

  • Order that no expenses are to be awarded to any party
  • Order that a sum of money is to be paid to a party or to party’s solicitor, as assessed by the sheriff clerk, or
  • Arrange an expenses hearing.

Please see What happens in a disputed case – What order can the sheriff make about expenses?’ for further information on assessment of expenses and what happens at an expenses hearing.

Part 9 of the simple procedure rules explains about applications.

Please Note: The information above cannot cover every situation which might arise in the course of a claim. You should also note that this information is not the authority upon which the procedure is based. The formal authority is contained in the Simple Procedure Rules.

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