National Records of Scotland

Preserving the past, Recording the present, Informing the future

Transmissions of Court and Legal Records

Transmissions of Court and Legal Records

Due to Covid-19, remote working arrangements are in place for CLR staff. Please note that CLR staff are unable to process scheduled transmissions until further notice.
For full information, please refer to our Covid-19 Information pages.

Following a defined period, criminal and civil court records are moved from various court and legal record stores to the custody of the NRS for long term preservation. This process is known as ‘transmission’.

Transmissions of records to the NRS are made under the Public Records (Scotland) Act 1937 and more recent Public Records (Scotland) Act 2011, with other statutory rules and regulations. The legislation ensures that:

  • there is authority for transmission under the relevant statutory provisions.
  • that your request conforms to the relevant statutory provisions.
  • that you seek the prior agreement of the NRS to make the transfer.

A list of the legislation covering archives can be found in the Legislation section. If you wish to transmit Sheriff Court you should also read the Sheriff Court Record Schedule (372 KB PDF). Our Court of Session and High Court schedules are currently under review.

There are established protocols between SCTS, COPFS and NRS staff (within Court & Legal Records) for the transmission of court records. All enquiries should be made to the assigned contact found under Contacting CLR.

Temporary Retransmissions

The NRS will return, or retransmit, your own records at your specific request, provided you give us sufficient information. Retransmissions are intended for short-term use of the records by depositors.

Details of how to request a temporary retransmission are given on our Temporary Retransmissions page.