Legal Members

Mental Health Tribunal for Scotland
Contract Type
Practice Area
Across Scotland
Daily fee of £447.46
5+ yrs
Expiry Date
This is a rewarding role where you can make a real difference to people’s lives. We are looking for people who can demonstrate enthusiasm and commitment and who wish to support the delivery of Justice in Scotland.

Job Description

The Mental Health Tribunal for Scotland (MHTS) is responsible for making, and reviewing orders for the detention and compulsory care and treatment of people in Scotland with a mental disorder. The tribunal also deals with applications for an order that a patient is being detained in conditions of excessive security or is unlawfully detained.

Time commitment

Approximately 2 days per month

Appointment term

5 years with automatic re-appointment subject to the provisions of the Tribunals (Scotland) Act 2014 (see note below)

Person Specification

Legal Member - you must have:

  • At least seven years standing as an advocate or solicitor admitted in Scotland; or
  • A seven year general qualification within the meaning of section 71 of the Courts and Legal Services Act 1990; or
  • At least seven years standing as a member of the Bar of Northern Ireland or solicitor of the Supreme Court of Northern Ireland.

You will be required to:

  • Prepare for hearings by reading the papers and identifying legal, procedural and factual issues that may require to be dealt with;
  • Lead the pre-hearing discussion with the other two tribunal panel members and agreeing how to conduct the hearing;
  • Convene hearings, decide with the other panel members procedural and preliminary matters, and ensure that hearings are fair, as informal as possible and efficiently managed;
  • Facilitate collective decision making, drafting the panel’s written decision with the statement of facts, reasons and any orders or directions of the panel to ensure that the law is appropriately applied and all relevant issues are covered in the written decision; 
  • Ensure that parties who are not always represented can fully present their case and have it considered fairly;
  • Ensure decisions and any orders of the panel are made efficiently, effectively and fairly;
  • Explain legal terminology and technicalities and advise other panel members as required;
  • Ensure the Tribunal follows its Rules of Procedure.

Experience of working in the area of mental health law and/or a general interest in mental health would be an advantage, as would experience of court or tribunal work.

The Tribunals (Scotland) Act 2014

In 2018, the MHTS will transfer to the First-tier Tribunal for Scotland, Mental Health Chamber and become a jurisdiction of the Scottish Tribunals.  At that time, members will become subject to the provisions in the 2014 Act.  This includes a compulsory retirement age of 70 as the 2014 Act amends section 26 of the Judicial Pensions and Retirement Act 1993, to bring tribunal members within the judicial offices to which the provisions in the 1993 Act apply to.

Appointments occurring prior to the transfer-in date will be subject to the provisions of the Mental Health (Care and Treatment) (Scotland) Act 2003.

Sift and Interview

The sift will take place from 13 to 17 November 2017 and interviews will be held in Edinburgh on 27, 28, 29 November and 5, 7, 8 December 2017.

Training dates 

Induction training will be held in Edinburgh on 12, 13 and 14 March 2018 for those candidates who are successful.

How to Apply

To request an application pack, please e-mail:  Please state the post you are applying for (i.e. legal, medical or general) and where you heard about the vacancy.

For further information about these posts please contact Emily Adams on 0131 244 3634.

The closing date for applications is Midnight on 22 October 2017.  Late applications will not be accepted.

The Scottish Ministers are committed to the principles of appointment on merit through an open, fair, transparent and impartial process.  We invite applications from those with relevant experience, irrespective of age, gender, race, sexual orientation, disability or belief.

If successful you will be required to produce a satisfactory enhanced disclosure certificate, which you will be liable to meet the cost of obtaining.  The cost is currently £25.


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