On appeal from: [2012] CSIH 7

The appellants operated a nursery that was registered in 2004 with the Scottish Commission for the Regulation of Care under the Regulation of Care (Scotland) Act 2001. The Commission became concerned at the way the nursery was being operated and gave notice of decisions to cancel the nursery’s registration. The appellants disputed the factual basis for these concerns and appealed the decision. In the meantime, the Commission had been dissolved and all its staff and property transferred to a new body, Social Care and Social Work Improvement Scotland, and parts of the 2001 Act were repealed. The appellants argued that the Commission could no longer be party to the appeals, and as SCSWIS had no title or interest to enter the proceedings each of the Commission’s decisions relating to the nursery were a nullity. The Inner House of the Court of Session held that under relevant transitional orders the proceedings were governed by the 2001 Act and the Commission was the proper respondent.

The Supreme Court unanimously affirmed the orders, to the extent that the matter was remitted to the Inner House for any further orders that might be required. The 2012 notice of implementation of proposals to cancel the nursery’s registration issued by SCSWIS was valid. The logical consequence of transferring all staff and resources to SCSWIS was that responsibility for performance of relevant functions would also be transferred. The Supreme Court also intervened to minimise further delay and expense by taking case management decisions that brought an end to parallel appeal proceedings.

For judgment, please download: [2013] UKSC 12
For Court’s press summary, please download: Court’s Press Summary
For a non-PDF version of the judgment, please visit: BAILII