“I am torn over this because although I strongly agree that the current system is not fit for purpose, it is much beloved by many of my colleagues specially perhaps by those for whom it provides a very good source of income. To stick my head above that parapet would be a very bold move indeed, and I have concerns that this could have an impact in my future work if the amendment is not granted and solicitor reporters continue to dominate this field. I worry that my clients could be prejudiced if those reporters took a personal grievance against me, and in turn my clients, from either a perceived threat to their income or my comments about their skills being unfit. It might also make me a hypocrite in future cases where I sought the instruction of a reporter, as I will admit this is something I regularly advise my clients to seek.
Ultimately, I feel I must act in a way that best protects my clients, and therefore I cannot publically take a stand against this. I would be very happy to take any further steps which you think might assist from a private aspect and I am truly sorry that I cannot openly stand with you on this, as I would dearly like to.”
The section8.scot post featuring a letter from Andrew Smith QC, in which we asked: “How many other lawyers in Scotland will now speak up in support of Scotland’s Children?“, inspired a senior family lawyer to write a strong letter to an MSP, pointing the MSP to the article cited above and setting out how the lawyer’s own experience was also a source of professional concern. When the lawyer was asked, by someone close to section8.scot, to consider allowing the letter to be published here, a dilemma was revealed.
The quote above is the lawyer’s subsequent reply which section8.scot has been given permission to publish here.