Privacy Statement

The Scottish Courts and Tribunals Service (SCTS) provides administrative support to courts and tribunals in Scotland. If you are involved in a court case or tribunal hearing, we are highly likely to process your personal data and to retain at least some of it. This processing is necessary in the public interest in order to fully support all aspects of the progression of a case through Scotland’s courts and tribunals, including the defending and establishing of rights. Records of each court or tribunal case and/or hearing are retained and some details – for example, the sentence in a criminal case or the outcome of an adoption – will be permanently archived as a part of Scotland’s national records. Some personal data may be shared with other persons or organisations when required or justified by law.

What is being processed?

The First-tier Tribunal for Scotland Social Security Chamber deals with appeals arising from a decision by the Social Security Scotland Agency acting on behalf of Scottish Ministers. 

Data will typically be details of an appellant, their benefit type, evidence which supports their application/re-determination, reasons for the re-determination and reasons for their appeal. The data will be provided by either the appellant themselves, their appointee or by their appointed representative.

The clerk to a tribunal hearing will make a digital record of the hearing using a digital recording device in accordance with the Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018 as stated in Rule 19 of the First-tier Tribunal for Scotland Social Security Chamber (Procedure) Regulations 2018.  All participants in the hearing will be informed of the recording process and SCTS’ retention and access policy.

 After the hearing, the clerk will upload the audio file to a folder in the Shared Drive on the network where it will be held there for up to one year after the last date of the hearing before it is deleted. Ability to access this Folder will be restricted and access to recordings will be at the discretion of the Chamber President. The audio recording can be made available to others during the one year period but this is at the discretion of the President and only under very specific circumstances. Please note that Schedule 2, paragraph 14 of the Data Protection Act 2018 disapplies Article 15 (right of access by the data subject) of the General Data Protection Regulation (the “GDPR”) in relation to personal data processed by “an individual acting in a judicial capacity, or…a court or tribunal acting in its judicial capacity”. 

Why are we processing this information?

Clients who are unhappy with their initial entitlement decision can request that Social Security Scotland (“the Agency”) perform a re-determination. During a re-determination, the Agency will put aside the original determination and a different, independent officer from another team in the Agency will go through the process of making a new determination.  If the client is still dissatisfied, they can request that their case is considered by the First-tier Tribunal for Scotland Social Security Chamber. To facilitate this, the Agency will send the client’s appeal request to the Tribunal, along with all of the data which was collected in the initial application processes and the re-determination. After the appeal has been lodged with the Tribunal, the Agency will have 31 days to send a submission, in their capacity as a party to the appeal. This submission will contain the Agency’s reasoning for the decisions which have been made in relation to the client’s entitlement.

There is an alternative appeals process for clients who wish to dispute a process decision. In this case clients will send their request for an appeal directly to the First-tier Tribunal for Scotland Social Security Chamber.  More information on this process can be found in the Social Security Directorate Programme DPIA [link].

Processing of Chamber case information is “necessary for the performance of a task carried out in the public interest or in the exercise of official authority vested in the controller” in terms of Article 6(1)(e) of the GDPR.

If you have a case the tribunal will process your personal data in order to discharge its statutory duties in accordance with the Social Security (Scotland) Act 2018 and The First-tier Tribunal for Scotland.

What categories of personal data are you processing?

From the special categories of data listed in Article 9(1) of the GDPR, the Tribunal will occasionally process special category data in terms of health.  It is however possible that other special category data might feature in a particular case.  This processing is necessary for the establishment, exercise or defence of legal claims or whenever courts are acting in their judicial capacity in terms of Article 9(2)(f) of the GDPR.

Where do you get my personal data from?

The Tribunal may receive your data from the following sources:

  • You may provide your own data to the Tribunal
  • Social Security Scotland
  • Local Authorities
  • Advocacy Services
  • Legal professionals

How, when and why does the SCTS share this personal data with others? 

Case information will be accessed by SCTS administrative staff, members of the First-tier Tribunal for Scotland and the Agency to the extent necessary to facilitate a hearing and to support the work of the tribunal. Tribunal hearings are open to the public. Access to case information or audio recordings will only be granted to parties of the hearing where the Chamber President believes that this will support access to justice.

  • In any case type, where the tribunal decides that expert evidence is required to assist in determining the case, relevant data pertaining to the case will be shared with the third party. All parties will be made aware of this at the time, and will receive a copy of any report received by the third party.
  • If information comes to light which raise concerns about the safety of an individual, this may be passed on to the appropriate authority for investigation.

Do you transfer my personal data to other countries?


How long do you keep my personal data?

We do not retain hard copy Tribunal case papers any longer than one year after closure of the case, while electronic copies of all case papers are stored securely on our case management system and processed in line with our records management plan. Electronic copy will be held for a period of 6 years.

Do you use automated decision making or profiling? If so, how do you use my personal data to make decisions about me?

No automated decision making or profiling takes place.

Your Personal Data

You are entitled to ask us for a copy of any of your personal data that we hold and to ask about why and how your personal data is held, processed, retained and shared. You can also challenge us if you think that we are processing your personal data inappropriately or if you consider that the information held is inaccurate. As set out in its Information Assurance Statement, the SCTS is committed to ensuring all personal information is collected and processed in accordance with data protection law.


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