Scotland is divided into six different areas called sheriffdoms as shown on the map below. A sheriff principal sits as the administrative head of each sheriffdom. Sheriffs principal (alongside appeal sheriffs) also sit in the Sheriff Appeal Court which deals with both criminal and civil business.

Sheriffs and summary sheriffs sit in Scotland’s 39 sheriff courts and deal with the vast majority of civil and criminal cases.

Part-time sheriffs are deployed when required to cover the work of permanent sheriffs away from business, for example attending judicial training or conferences, or on annual or sick leave.

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