In October 2021, ERCS submitted a Freedom of Information request to the Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service as part of an investigation into the impact of Protective Expenses Orders, which are intended to reduce the cost of litigation for environmental cases. The information disclosed reveals how the current system for allocating court costs continues to act as a barrier to justice.
This is the second instalment of a two-part briefing on the use of PEOs in environmental cases. Our legal system is meant to give anyone with a genuine claim the opportunity to enforce their environmental rights. Yet the cost of litigation is the greatest barrier to access to justice.
Part 1 discussed the barriers ERCS has encountered in trying to access information about them and how it illustrates the lack of transparency and inefficacy of the current system. In this briefing, new analysis highlights the fundamental inadequacy of the PEO regime and the need to replace it with a fairer system.