Scottish Judges and the Bar

Security note: For security reasons it is essential that correspondence to Judiciary - whether serving or retired at their private addresses should omit all reference to their Judicial rank. Plain or double envelopes must be used.

The tables below show you how to address Scottish Judges and members of the Bar verbally and in writing.


Senior Judges

The Lord President of the Court of Session and Lord Justice General is a Privy Counsellor and usually a Peer. In normal correspondence the office-holder is addressed as Lord President of the Court of Session the two titles are not usually combined. The office-holder should be addressed as follows:

Division Address (in correspondence) Dear...
Civil (If a Peer)
The Right Honourable The Lord Doe
Lord President of the Court of Session
Lord President
Criminal (If a Peer) The Right Honourable The Lord Doe
Lord Justice General
Lord Justice General
If not a Peer The Right Honourable Lord Doe
Lord President of the Court of Session
Lord President
Retired The Right Honourable (The) Lord Doe Lord Doe
Office/Position Address (in correspondence) Dear...
Lord Justice Clerk
When not a Privy Counsellor
The Honourable Lord Doe
Lord Justice Clerk
Lord Justice Clerk
When he/she is a Privy Counsellor
[Note: The Practice is to confer Privy Councillor status on the Lord Justice Clerk]
The Right Honourable Lord Doe
Lord Justice Clerk
Lord Justice Clerk
Retired The Honourable Lord Doe Lord Doe

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Judges

Judges of the Court of Session are all Senators of the College of Justice in Scotland and have the courtesy style and title of "Lord" or "Lady" (which should be distinguished from a peerage title) and also the prefix "Honourable". Some Lords of Session (often former Lords Advocate) are however Peers. They should be addressed as follows:

Office/position Address (in correspondence) Dear...
Male: When not a Privy Counsellor The Honourable Lord Doe Lord Doe
Male: Privy Counsellor The Right Honourable Lord Doe Lord Doe
Male: Privy Counsellor and Peer The Right Honourable The Lord Doe Lord Doe
Male: Retired The Honourable Lord Doe, or The Right Honourable (The) Lord Doe (as the case may be) Lord Doe
Wife of current or retired judge Lady Doe Lady Doe
Female: Not a Privy Counsellor The Honourable Lady Doe Lady Doe
Female: Privy Counsellor The Right Honourable Lady Doe Lady Doe
Female: Privy Counsellor and Peer The Right Honourable The Lady Doe
Lady Doe
Female: Retired The Honourable Lady Doe, or The Right Honourable Lady Doe (as the case may be) Lady Doe
Husband of current or retired judge No title

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Chairman of the Scottish Land Court

The Chairman is addressed in the same way as a judge of the Court of Session.

Address (in correspondence) Dear...
The Honourable Lord Doe
Lord Doe
In retirement As for judge of Court of Session

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The Shrieval Bench

Address (in correspondence) Dear...
Sheriff - Principal John Doe
(QC should be added where applicable)
Sheriff Principal Doe
Sheriff John Doe Sheriff Doe
In retirement No title

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The Bar/Use of QC

The description of Scottish Advocates is exactly the same as for the English Barristers:

Address (in correspondence) Dear...
Members of the Bar - no special form of address Usual titles in their private capacities
Queen's counsel John Doe Esq. QC
(when the Sovereign is a King - John Doe Esq. KC)
QC/KC appointed as a Judge of the Court of Session Never use QC/KC