Judges from Brazil learn about Scots legal system

01 Jun


Around 180 judges from Brazil are finding out about the Scottish legal system during a four-day visit.

The Association of Brazilian Magistrates (AMB), which represents all levels of the Brazilian judiciary, chose the United Kingdom as the venue for its second International Congress.

After a series of events in London, the delegates moved north of the Border for presentations in Parliament House, the Signet Library, Edinburgh University and Stirling University, arranged by the Judicial Institute for Scotland.

James Wolffe, QC, Dean of Faculty, gave a talk about the advocates’ profession, while David Parratt, the Faculty’s Director of Training and Education, outlined civil procedure in the Scottish courts.

“The academic and practical requirements for admission as an advocate reflect the expectation that any advocate has the right to represent accused persons and litigants in any civil or criminal court in Scotland,” said Mr Wolffe.

“And, although most advocates start their careers as solicitors, in order to become advocates, they must undergo a specialist training course lasting up to nine months which is specifically tailored to skill in advocacy.”

Dr Parratt took the judges through the court procedure of the Court of Session, and explained the overall scheme of civil justice.

He told the visitors that civil procedure in Scotland placed great emphasis on the form of the written pleadings.

He explained: "A party cannot lead evidence of matters not covered in the pleadings. Parties have to ensure that their pleadings are sufficient and relevant."