Media to have a voice before any gagging order is made

17 Mar

 The media will have a chance to be heard before any orders which restrict reporting of proceedings are made by a court, under new rules.

The Scottish Civil Justice Council (SCJC) announced that an Act of Sederunt will come into force on 1 April.

Currently, arrangements for notifying the media of an order imposing restrictions relate only to orders made under section 4 (2) of the Contempt of Court Act. Under the new regime, those arrangements will apply to all instances where the court is considering making an order.

The changes will also introduce interim orders. At the moment, restrictions on the reporting of a case can be applied without representations by the press or broadcasters being heard; any challenge has to be made after an order has been granted.

From 1 April, an interim order will trigger notification to interested parties who will then have two days to lodge representations to the court, and a hearing will be fixed.

The SCJC announcement is at