Changes to the rules governing expenses and taxation
Two new Acts of Sederunt, which come into force on 29 April 2019, make various changes to relating to taxation of expenses.
The Act of Sederunt (Taxation of Judicial Expenses Rules) 2019 sets out a single set of rules for taxation of expenses applying to the Court of Session, the Sheriff Appeal Court and the sheriff court (with the exception of summary cause). The tables of charges contained in the rules no longer set out sums of money which are recoverable. Instead the expenses recoverable are to be calculated on the basis of proportions of a unit which is currently fixed at £16.40. Another change is that the default position for obtaining certification for expert witnesses and sanction for counsel, in certain cases, changes so that this should now be sought in advance. If sanction is to be sought after the event, cause will need to be shown as to why the application was not made before the work was carried out. Although further applications for certification or sanction may be possible if there is a change in circumstances.
The Act of Sederunt (Rules of the Court of Session, Sheriff Appeal Court Rules and Ordinary Cause Rules Amendment)(Taxation of Judicial Expenses) 2019 ties up the court rules on expenses with the Taxation of Judicial Expenses Rules. It also makes some other changes including adding the four month time for lodging accounts of expenses to the Ordinary Cause Rules in the sheriff court and the Sheriff Appeal Court rules and adding a new rules governing interest on expenses.
Increases in court fees
The most recent increases to court fees came into force on 1 April 2019. For the Court of Session the updated fees are listed in schedule 2 of The Court of Session etc Fees Order 2018, for the sheriff court they are listed in schedule 2 of The Sheriff Court Fees Order 2018.
Simple Procedure Rules
The Act of Sederunt (Simple Procedure Amendment) (Civil Online) 2019 makes changes to the forms set out in the Simple Procedure Rules to confirm that that respondents can respond to simple procedure claim forms which have been served on them via the Civil Online portal. These changes will come into force on 25 April 2019 when additional functions allowing some electronic submission of forms and uploading of documents will become available on the Civil Online portal.
Court of Session Rules
The Act of Sederunt (Rules of the Court of Session 1994 Amendment)(Regulation (EC) No 44/2001) (Transitional Provisions) 2019 came into force on 28 March 2019. It makes amendments to Part V of Chapter 62 of the Rules of the Court of Session to cover recognition and enforcement of judgments under Council Regulation (EC) No 44/2001 to plug the gap identified in the case of Drika BVBA v Giles  CSIH 42.
The Act of Sederunt (Rules of the Court of Session 1994 and Sheriff Court Rules Amendment)( Miscellaneous) 2019 came into force on 6 April 2019. It makes amendments to the Rules of the Court of Session and the Act of Sederunt (Sheriff Court Company Insolvency Rules) 1986 as a consequence of the revocation of the Insolvency (Scotland) Rules 1986 and replacement with the Insolvency (Scotland) (Company Voluntary Arrangements and Administration) Rules 2018 and the Insolvency (Scotland) (receivership and Winding up) Rules 2018. It also makes a change to the Act of Sederunt (Company Directors Disqualification) 1986 to make it clear that compensation orders and applications for variation and revocation of compensation undertakings under the 1986 Act are made by summary application.