Record

CodeNA8070
Person NameAberdeen County Sheriff Court
ActivityThe office of sheriff in Scotland originated during reign of David I (1124-1153). Sheriffs had administrative and military responsibilities including the execution of royal writs and the collection of royal taxes, as well as judicial powers. Sheriffs were the king's representatives in localities. By 1700 sheriffs heard most of the civil and criminal cases in Scotland, yet 21 out of 33 sheriffdoms were held on a hereditary basis. Sheriff courts were often inefficient and corrupt and many claimants were forced to go to central courts. However from 1748, in response to the Jacobite rising of 1745, all heritable sheriffdoms were abolished and new status and authority were conferred on the sheriff courts. Many functions of the abolished franchise courts fell to the sheriff courts. Salaried advocates or 'sheriffs depute' with 3 years experience were now placed in charge of sheriff courts, aided by their own deputies, the sheriffs-substitute. Subsequent legislation enforced requirements which included qualification and residency. Throughout the 18th and 19th centuries both the civil and criminal jurisdiction of the court expanded, as duties were delegated from the Court of Session. The responsibilities of the Commissary Courts and the Admiralty Court, which were abolished in 1823 and 1839 respectively, also passed to the Sheriff Court. Sheriffs continued to acquire new functions during the twentieth century, most notably in recent times in the field of divorce. In 2002 modern sheriffs and sheriffs principal presided over 6 sheriffdoms and 49 sheriff court districts. Aberdeen Sheriff Court is in the sheriffdom of Grampian Highlands and Islands.
Corporate NameAberdeen County Sheriff Court
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