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Entries in family cases (1)

Wednesday
Oct262011

Family cases in court - statistics published

Civil Judicial Statistics for 2010-11 have just been published by the Scottish Government.  They give an indication of how many contact and residence cases are being heard in court and the outcome of some of these cases, although some questions remain unanswered.

The Sheriff Court is the main place for family cases, and table 12 summarises the data.  2709 of family cases concern parental responsibilities and rights (PRR), the largest single category after divorce (10,893).

Within the overall PRR category, 1182 cases are about contact, 762 are about residence and 765 are categorised as "other". 

In 2009-10 these totals were 1130, 682 and 928  respectively; in 2008-09 they were 868, 572 and 921.

Although we need to know more about how cases have been analysed in each of these three years, there appears to have been a growth in both residence and contact cases over this period.

Looking at outcomes, the total number of PRR contact cases found in favour of the pursuer in the 2008-09, 2009-10 and 2010-11 are 154, 182 and 238 resp.  For PRR residence cases, the totals are 235, 257 and 302 resp.

Again this suggests a growth in this type of family action but we cannot draw firm conclusions without more study.  FNF Scotland will be involved in discussion about how this information is interpreted and what further information would be useful and we will return to this topic.