In a recent post over on Scots Law News, Professor Hector MacQueen posed an interesting question. He said:
Is it beyond the wit of our legal systems to devise some joint procedure involving both Scots and English judges to produce rulings that will be binding in both systems? Could this be a role for the new UK Supreme Court the launch of which is now not much more than a year away? As things stand, the Scottish legal system is not even being treated as a junior partner in the UK legal structure by either the OFT or the banks, and Scottish litigants are being denied the opportunity to have their complaints considered with the compliance of several of the Scottish judges. Someone in a position to do so ought to be doing something about it.
He does make a good point. The Office of Fair Trading and the banks have had total contempt for Scottish customers. This case s before a court which has no direct impact upon the operation of Scots Law and as such no Scottish court is obliged to follow the decision of the case.
In cases of such importance, where there is to be a UK wide impact, there should be a mixed bench sitting. Professor MacQueen has suggested that this could, in the future, be a function of the UK Supreme Court established by the Constitutional Reform Act 2005 and which is to come into operation in the very near future.
If anyone has any opinions I would really like to read them, so please do comment or send me an E-mail.