Scotland's Future

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Chapter 7 Justice, Security and Home Affairs

  • With independence, Scotland will have the full range of powers needed to keep our people and communities safe, to further reduce crime, to take a coherent approach to tackling crime and to create stronger and cohesive communities
  • A security and intelligence agency will ensure the safety and security of Scotland's citizens, the first responsibility of any government, within strict legal controls determined by the Scottish Parliament
  • We plan a controlled points-based system to support the migration of skilled workers for the benefit of Scotland's economy
  • An independent Scotland will have an inclusive approach to citizenship and a humane approach to asylum seekers and refugees

Why we need a new approach

Key powers needed to make our communities safer, stronger and more secure are currently controlled by Westminster, including decisions about drugs, firearms, gambling, road safety and the proceeds of drug trafficking. To tackle the underlying causes of inequality in our society, we need to take decisions about welfare benefits, incentives to employment and overall levels of public expenditure. This will ensure that our distinctive Scottish approach to justice, in its broadest sense, can be fully realised.

Whilst the Scottish Government and Parliament are making a positive difference with the powers we have, there is still much work to be done to ensure the justice system works effectively, particularly for those communities most blighted by crime.

A key element of the Scottish Government's approach to tackling crime has been to use funds seized from criminals to invest in our communities and provide positive opportunities for young people. The Cashback for Communities programme, established in 2007, has invested over £50 million recovered under the Proceeds of Crime Act (2002) to fund activities and facilities in communities across Scotland[270]. However, the total amount that Scotland is able to retain and reinvest from the proceeds of crime is capped by the Westminster Government at £30 million a year. Westminster has refused requests for the cap to be removed to allow more resources seized from criminals in Scotland to be invested in our communities.

Whilst the Scotland Act 2012 provided Scotland with some limited additional powers, for example to set a different drink driving limit from the rest of the UK and to license air weapons, Westminster has refused to devolve further powers necessary to help make our roads and communities safer.

With decisions on immigration taken in Scotland we can adopt an approach that works better for Scotland's economy and society. In particular, we can reverse some of the decisions taken by Westminster which are damaging the ability of Scotland's colleges and universities to attract high-quality international students. It is also difficult to conceive of a Scottish government that would ever adopt the crude "go home" approach tried by the current Westminster Government.

The opportunities available to Scotland

The existing independence of Scotland's legal and justice systems ensures a strong starting point for our independent country. Successive Scottish governments have legislated to ensure that we keep up-to-date with the requirements of a modern justice system. These reforms demonstrate the value of taking decisions here in Scotland, as well as highlighting the barriers that exist as part of the current constitutional arrangements.

With devolution, Scotland has benefited from taking decisions for itself across a wide range of justice issues. The Scottish Government has introduced a series of improvements to modernise our justice system and ensure that it can meet the needs of our citizens in the 21st century. Through our focus on prevention, crime in Scotland is falling and people feel safer in their communities[271]. Recorded crime is at a 39-year low[272] with homicides at their lowest level since 1976[273] and the crime clear-up rate is the highest in over 35 years[274].

Despite budget cuts imposed by Westminster, the Scottish Government has continued to invest in front-line policing. The establishment of Police Scotland has ensured that local policing is maintained, but with access to specialist expertise and equipment whenever necessary. Scotland is maintaining police numbers at over 1,000 extra officers compared with 2007[275] and the Scottish Government has rejected other changes to policing proposed by Westminster which would, for example, allow people without relevant policing experience direct entry to senior police roles.

Scotland has led the way in tackling crime and in promoting preventative approaches. Scotland's Serious and Organised Crime Strategy[276] and new Scottish Crime Campus at Gartcosh will ensure that agencies work together to share intelligence and deal effectively with organised criminals. However, some measures needed to deal with organised crime, such as the control of firearms and decisions on the proceeds of drug trafficking, are currently reserved to Westminster.

With independence, we can ensure that security and intelligence functions are focused on defending our democratic values and securing our fundamental rights and freedoms. These functions will be carried out under democratic control in Scotland. The right balance must be struck between the rights enshrined in the new Scottish written constitution, including key human rights such as the right to privacy and to freedom of expression, and the need to keep us safe and secure from serious threats such as terrorism. Our security and intelligence agency will be subject to legislation which protects human rights and sets out clearly the powers and responsibilities of, and controls over, the agency. These will be in line with international standards, including ensuring that there is expert and democratic control of the agency[277].

The Scotland we can create

Justice is one of the fundamental responsibilities of government: to provide safety, security and fairness to the citizens of the country. Our justice system provides the foundation for delivering the kind of nation Scotland should be - a thriving and successful European country, reflecting shared values of fairness and opportunity, and promoting prosperity and social cohesion. Our existing responsibilities combined with new powers, will enable us to build a Scotland that is more prosperous, communities that are safer and a society that is more comfortable with itself.

A primary function of government is to ensure the security of its citizens, and to protect them, their property and way of life against threats. An independent Scotland will have national security arrangements that reflect Scotland's specific needs and values, recognising the risks and threats we face, based on a full review of security requirements and on a regular assessment of threats.

An independent Scotland will also be responsible for immigration and citizenship, with the opportunity to develop an immigration policy that sensibly meets Scotland's population and economic needs, while enriching our society.

The justice system

The choices open to us

An independent Scotland will have control over policy on welfare, employment and public expenditure. It is our more deprived communities that suffer most from the impact of crime and are most vulnerable to the influence of organised crime. By providing our young people with positive opportunities, through employment and education, we can help them to participate fully in society and create stronger and more cohesive communities. We also know that access to employment, housing and other services are key to reducing re-offending[278]. Issues arising from debt, housing and welfare problems also place demands on our courts. Rather than just dealing with the consequences of crime and disadvantage through our devolved justice system, an independent Scotland will be able to use the full range of powers available to government to make our communities safer, stronger and more secure.

There are also some specific issues that will become the responsibility of the Scottish Parliament on independence. Responsibility for these will allow Scotland to take an integrated approach to issues that affect our communities like drugs and gun crime. The priorities of the current Scottish Government in an independent Scotland would be:

Firearms: building on current work to improve control of airguns in Scotland, firearms legislation could be simplified, making it easier for the public to understand and easier to enforce.

Road traffic offences and drink driving: building on current proposals for a new drink drive limit, Scotland's roads could be made safer through more appropriate penalties for drink driving, and powers for the police to conduct random breath tests any time, anywhere[279].

Gambling: it is estimated there are 30,500 problem gamblers in Scotland[280]. With independence, Scotland will have the powers to better tackle problem gambling through effective regulation of the industry, in contrast to Westminster's approach of greater deregulation[281].

Drugs: since 2008, Scotland's drug strategy, The Road to Recovery, has led the UK in tackling drugs issues and has received international acclaim for its focus on care, treatment and recovery. Drug taking in the general population is falling[282] and drug taking among young people is at its lowest level for a decade[283]. Whilst drugs policy is currently devolved, drugs classification remains reserved to Westminster. Independence will allow decisions on drugs policy and drug classification to be taken together in a coherent way.

Our priorities for action

Independence will provide the Scottish Parliament and Scottish Government with the opportunity to address significant justice issues that will help define the nature of society in an independent Scotland. For example, a new written constitution will protect and enshrine our distinctive justice and legal systems to support the rule of law, human rights and a strong democracy.

Following independence, existing laws, whether passed by the Westminster or the Scottish Parliament, will continue to apply until they are amended by the independent Scottish Parliament. Human rights will continue to be protected, as they are for devolved matters under the Scotland Act 1998. The independence of Scotland's judiciary and prosecutors will be maintained. Our police, courts, prisons, community justice and fire and rescue services will continue to operate. Police, fire and other public sector pensions will be paid and accrued rights will be protected.

Existing well-established arrangements to ensure effective cross-border co-operation between Scotland's justice agencies and those in the remainder of the UK will continue, including, for example, cross-border policing and arrest, and prisoner transfers.

The Inner House of the Court of Session and the High Court of Justiciary sitting as the Court of Criminal Appeal will collectively be Scotland's Supreme Court. Our courts will continue to collect income from fines imposed on offenders. However, rather than transferring more than 75 per cent of this income out of Scotland to the UK Treasury, Scotland will retain the full value, providing approximately £7 million in additional income to invest in our communities. The Westminster Government's cap on income which Scotland can retain under proceeds of crime legislation, currently set at £30 million each year, will be removed.

Following independence, Scotland will continue as a member of the EU and other international organisations concerned with justice, including the Hague Conference on Private International Law and the Council of Europe, which covers the European Convention on Human Rights and a range of criminal law issues. Scottish courts will still refer points of EU law to the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg and people will continue to be able to make an application to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

An independent Scotland will maintain current arrangements for extradition, including participation in the European Arrest Warrant scheme and seeking agreements to ensure that criminals can be pursued and brought to justice across international borders. Scotland will work with other EU member states to protect the public and tackle cross-border crime, including through participation in co-operative institutions such as Europol and Eurojust. However, an independent Scotland would not rely solely on the European Arrest Warrant procedures for arrests that take place between Scotland and the rest of the UK. It will be in the interests of an independent Scotland and the rest of the UK to agree arrangements for cross-border arrests that are as efficient and effective as the current arrangements. Such a bilateral arrangement is explicitly allowed under European legislation.

An independent Scotland will also play an active and committed role in the EU's Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), which enables EU members to co-operate to enhance Europe's security.

Security and intelligence

The choices open to us

An independent Scotland will be able to take a strategic approach to national security, underpinned by effective planning and investment across government. There will be contributions from the police, a new Scottish security and intelligence agency, the military and others, to ensure appropriate responses to a range of identified threats and risks, including terrorism, cyber security threats and national emergencies.

As part of that, Scotland will need an independent security and intelligence capacity to ensure our security. Independence offers an opportunity to build a new model for such work, which is fit for the 21st century and which provides a proportionate means of ensuring Scotland's national security. We have studied a range of international comparators[284] in preparing our proposals[285].

Our priorities for action

The current Scottish Government plans to set up a single security and intelligence agency for Scotland on independence. The purpose of the agency will be set out in legislation, and will include the requirement to work with partners to ensure Scotland's national security.

This will be a modern and fit-for-purpose security and intelligence agency. By day one of independence, it will be responsible for and capable of functions including:

  • investigation of threats
  • liaison: with Police Scotland and others in Scotland; with the rest of the UK; and internationally
  • intelligence gathering, receipt and handling
  • production of open-source intelligence material
  • assessment and analysis
  • production of risk and threat assessments
  • protection of Scotland's critical infrastructure
  • cyber security functions

In carrying out these functions it will build on expertise which exists in Scotland in the gathering and analysis of information and intelligence.

Initially, we will draw on expertise (such as training and IT) from other countries, primarily, given our long joint history, from the rest of the UK. Such joint working in the early period after independence will deliver a seamless transition ensuring that the security of both countries is continuously maintained. The UK has, in the past, provided such support for the creation or development of security services in other countries[286].

Setting up a new agency will allow us to do things differently, unconstrained by historical structures and precedent, and avoiding any barriers between different agencies. As well as traditional covert capability, we will invest in the means to analyse the vast amount of information which is openly available, and to develop our capacity for strategic assessment.

A Scottish security and intelligence agency will play a leading role in ensuring the resilience of our critical infrastructure. Scotland is the only country in the UK to have published a critical infrastructure strategy, Secure and Resilient[287], which provides a framework for improving the resilience and protection of Scotland's critical assets. Following independence, we will further develop our own capability and our particular focus on a wide range of critical assets, while collaborating closely with the rest of the UK. This collaboration will be crucial, given the UK dependence on critical Scottish assets (particularly energy).

We will invest in cyber security, both in terms of protective measures and to attract and retain the right skills in Scotland. Our strategy will be to secure Scotland from attack, and also protect our citizens and strengthen our economy. Delivery of some aspects of the Scottish Government's cyber security strategy will be undertaken by the Scottish security and intelligence agency, but other partners such as our universities and businesses will also be involved in our joint effort against cyber threats.

We will continue to work with the rest of the UK on cyber security. This will be in the mutual interests of Scotland and the rest of the UK. During the initial period the focus will be on maintaining our levels of cyber security and ensuring a seamless transition. We expect that the independence settlement will include appropriate recognition of Scottish taxpayers' proportionate contribution to the UK's current Cyber Security Programme (a programme of UK-wide investment scheduled to finish before Scotland becomes independent in 2016).

Relationship with the Scottish criminal justice system

In line with good practice, a new security and intelligence agency will be independent of, but work extremely closely with, Scotland's single police service, Police Scotland. There is already a long track record of close co-operation between the UK security services and the police in Scotland. The agency will build on that history and make the relationship even more effective, while ensuring that there is very clear separation in terms of responsibilities, tasking, governance and accountability.

Detention and arrests will continue to be a matter for Police Scotland and prosecution will continue to be a matter for the Lord Advocate.

Working with partners

The rest of the UK will be our closest neighbour and our most important friend and ally. There is no doubt that intelligence-sharing will be in the best interests of the people of Scotland and of the rest of the UK. The Scottish and Westminster Governments will engage closely as equal and co-operative allies in tackling issues of joint interest such as terrorism and serious organised crime. It will be a strong relationship of sovereign equals.

Existing agencies already work closely together. For example, Scotland plays an active part in the UK Counter Terrorism Strategy and, given that responsibility for policing and justice is already devolved to the Scottish Parliament, there is extensive cross-border co-operation on security. The effectiveness of these arrangements was seen in the co-operation between Scottish police forces, the Security Service and the Metropolitan Police Service after the Glasgow Airport bombing. It will be in the mutual interests of Scotland and the rest of the UK to ensure that this cross-border co-operation continues following independence, supported by Police Scotland and a Scottish security and intelligence agency.

Some commentators have questioned whether the UK would choose to share intelligence with Scotland. However, as the Westminster Government's Scotland Analysis: Security paper of October 2013 made clear: "It is clearly in the UK's interests to be surrounded by secure and resilient neighbouring countries, including - in the event of a Yes vote - an independent Scottish state"[288].

A new security and intelligence agency will have the appropriate security arrangements necessary to give assurance to international partners that it can receive and handle intelligence safely and securely. There is already significant experience and expertise within both the Scottish Government and Police Scotland in handling sensitive, classified information, and the necessary procedures for doing so are well understood. The new agency will also liaise closely with international partners on operational matters, building from the basis of existing relationships.

An independent Scotland will explore the benefits of developing closer relationships with the primary EU agencies already engaged in cyber security: the NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence; the European Network Information Security Agency; and the European CyberCrime Centre.

Legislation, governance and oversight

Early legislation will set out the purpose, duties and powers of a Scottish security and intelligence agency and the controls that will exist on the use of these powers.

Under independence, Scottish citizens will enjoy written constitutional rights for the first time. Striking the right balance between maintaining the constitutional and human rights of our citizens and the need for national security will be vital. In order to protect the safety of others, some of the work undertaken by security and intelligence agencies means, by necessity, interference with the privacy of specific individuals. Such work can and does save lives, but it needs to be done in a proportionate and managed way.

There has been extensive public debate about surveillance and the collection of information, especially in relation to online communications. In an independent Scotland, legislation will set out clear arrangements for investigatory powers, building on - and updating where necessary - the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 and the Regulation of Investigatory Powers (Scotland) Act 2000[289]. Our planned legislation will ensure that law enforcement agencies have the powers that they need to do their job and keep Scotland safe, while also clarifying the limit of those powers and the extent of the controls over them.

The controls put in place will be wide-ranging and comprehensive. The planned legislation will bring democratic control of our national security to Scotland for the first time. Scottish Ministers will be accountable to the Scottish Parliament for what a Scottish security and intelligence agency does in their name. The Scottish Parliament and the Scottish equivalent of the relevant Commissioners[290] will scrutinise and challenge the work of the agency, including its covert work. They will be given clear legislative powers to support their work, including the power to require documents to be provided and to require the senior management of the agency to give evidence. There will also be detailed budget scrutiny from the Auditor General for Scotland, and the top-level budget will be scrutinised by the Scottish Parliament as part of the Budget Bill.

This scrutiny will ensure that the agency is acting properly, legally, efficiently and effectively, in line with international principles for intelligence service oversight[291]. These processes must take transparency as their starting point. But in so doing, they will appropriately and rigorously protect aspects of the agency's work that cannot be made public, and will respect the control principle[292] at all times.

Resources

Ensuring that Scotland is secure will be the primary responsibility of the Scottish Government, and the investment made in the agency will reflect that. The exact size and cost of a security and intelligence agency will be determined by the risks and threats that Scotland face. The UK agencies cost around £2 billion per year; based on population, Scotland contributed £206 million last year[293]. We anticipate maintaining a comparable level of spending under independence.

In the early years we will make a significant level of investment in setting up the agency. Scotland, of course, already has a substantial existing capital stake, from our investment in UK intelligence infrastructure. We will expect investment to be recognised in the arrangements that are agreed with the UK as part of the independence settlement.

Immigration

The choices open to us

One of the major gains from independence for Scotland will be responsibility for our own immigration policy. Currently immigration is a reserved matter, and the Westminster Government's policy for the whole of the UK is heavily influenced by conditions in the south east of England. Westminster has also adopted an aggressive approach to immigration, asylum seekers and refugees, culminating in the recent controversy over advertisements to tell people to leave the UK and "go home".

Scotland has a different need for immigration than other parts of the UK. Healthy population growth is important for Scotland's economy. One of the main contributors to Scotland's population growth is migrants who choose to make Scotland their home. In future our enhanced economic strategy will also do more to encourage young people to build their lives and careers within Scotland and to attract people to live in Scotland.

Scotland's differing demographic and migration needs mean that the current UK immigration system has not supported Scotland's migration priorities. The current Westminster approach is strongly focused on reducing the overall number of migrants and introducing caps for certain categories of skilled individuals. In April 2012, the Westminster Government stopped the post-study work visa, which allowed recent graduates to work or set up a business in the UK for 24 months thus retaining skilled and educated graduates as part of the UK labour force. Westminster has also set financial maintenance thresholds for most migrants at a standard level across the UK despite variations in average earnings. With independence, each of these decisions will be for Scottish governments, with policy choices made on the basis of Scotland's needs and priorities.

Historically Scotland's population has grown at a lower rate compared to the rest of the UK. The latest population projections suggest that Scotland's workforce will not grow as rapidly as the UK as a whole[294]. Scotland's population needs are therefore different to the rest of the UK and Scotland has a clear economic rationale for growing our population - in particular our working age population. The Government Economic Strategy sets out a target "to match average European (EU-15) population growth over the period from 2007 to 2017, supported by increased healthy life expectancy in Scotland over this period".

Scotland is not well served by Westminster's decisions on immigration and, given our specific circumstances, finding the right approach for Scotland's economy and society is an important part of ensuring a more sustainable future for our nation.

An independent Scotland, as a modern democracy, will meet our international obligations and play a responsible role on the world stage. We will demonstrate our respect for international law, human rights and social justice in offering asylum to those seeking a place of refuge from persecution, war, natural disaster or other major crises. Scotland already plays its part in efforts to provide a home for refugees as part of the UK and will do so as an independent country.

The asylum process in an independent Scotland must be underpinned by an emphasis on robust, fair, socially-responsible and thorough decision-making, with clear adherence to human rights and equality principles and to the rule of law.

Our priorities for action

Migrants have played an important part throughout Scottish history in enriching and renewing our culture and boosting the economy of the country. We will welcome people who want to come to work and live in Scotland.

We plan to continue in the current Common Travel Area with the rest of the UK and Ireland so there will be no need for border checks between an independent Scotland and England. The Common Travel Area already allows for different and independent systems within Ireland and the UK, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands. This flexibility in the Common Travel Area will enable us to implement our own design for a controlled and more flexible immigration system.

As a full member of the EU, Scottish borders will remain open to EU nationals exercising their treaty rights, just as Scots are free now to move throughout the EU.

For non-EU nationals, independence will enable us to develop and operate a controlled, transparent and efficient immigration system. This Government will take forward a points-based approach targeted at particular Scottish requirements. The system will enable us to meet the needs of Scottish society with greater flexibility, for example by providing incentives to migrants who move to live and work in more remote geographical areas, assisting with community sustainability, or adding new categories of skills.

We plan to lower the current financial maintenance thresholds and minimum salary levels for entry, to better align them with Scottish average wages and cost of living. This will open up greater opportunities for key skilled individuals from overseas who could play important roles in our society and economy and fill vital vacancies in individual businesses.

A particular issue for Scotland is the post-study work visa. There are over 30,000 international students from more than 150 countries in Scotland; over 11 per cent of all students studying in Scotland are drawn from elsewhere in the EU and about 10 per cent are from the rest of the world[295]. This Government plans to reintroduce the post-study work visa. This visa will encourage more talented people from around the world to further their education in Scotland, providing income for Scotland's education institutions and contributing to the local economy and community diversity.

An independent Scotland will have the opportunity for a new model of asylum services separate from immigration. We propose that a Scottish Asylum Agency should oversee asylum applications. The process will be both robust and humane, and we will continue Scotland's present approach of promoting the integration of refugees and asylum seekers from the day they arrive, not just once leave to remain has been granted (as is the case in the rest of the UK). In an independent Scotland, we will close Dungavel, end the practice of dawn raids and inhumane treatment of those who have exercised their legitimate right to seek asylum. If a failed asylum seeker is a risk to the public, secure accommodation will be sought whilst steps are taken to remove them. If there is a need for forcible removals, these will be undertaken with respect for human rights. Independence will also afford the opportunity to address asylum seekers' access to employment, education and accommodation.

Citizenship

The choices open to us

Deciding who is a citizen is a defining characteristic of an independent state and future Scottish governments will have the power to determine rules on citizenship and nationality.

Our priorities for action

At the point of independence, this Government proposes an inclusive model of citizenship for people whether or not they define themselves as primarily or exclusively Scottish or wish to become a Scottish passport holder. People in Scotland are accustomed to multiple identities, be they national, regional, ethnic, linguistic or religious, and a commitment to a multi-cultural Scotland will be a cornerstone of the nation on independence.

We plan that British citizens habitually resident[296] in Scotland on independence will be considered Scottish citizens. This will include British citizens who hold dual citizenship with another country. Scottish born British citizens currently living outside of Scotland will also be considered Scottish citizens.

Following independence, other people will be able to apply for Scottish citizenship. For example, citizenship by descent will be available to those who have a parent or grandparent who qualifies for Scottish citizenship. Those who have a demonstrable connection to Scotland and have spent at least ten years living here at some stage, whether as a child or an adult, will also have the opportunity to apply for citizenship. Migrants on qualifying visas will also have the option of applying for naturalisation as a Scottish citizen.

The UK allows dual or multiple citizenship for British citizens. If a British citizen acquires citizenship and a passport of another country, this does not affect their British citizenship, right to hold a British passport or right to live in the UK. The Scottish Government will also allow dual citizenship. It will be for the rest of the UK to decide whether it allows dual UK/Scottish citizenship, but we expect the normal rules to extend to Scottish citizens.

Passports

Inherent to citizenship is the right to hold a passport. In an independent Scotland all British citizens born or habitually resident in Scotland on day one of independence will have the right to acquire a Scottish passport, although, as in most countries, there will be no requirement to hold one. A Scottish passport will also be available to anyone who acquires Scottish citizenship through naturalisation. It is envisaged that passport lengths will continue to be five years for children and 10 years for adults and will carry a fee comparable to that presently required for a UK passport which will be used to cover the administrative and production costs of the passport. As a member of the EU, Scottish passports will follow the EU passport model and therefore will broadly follow the current look of UK passports in colour, size, and layout, but will be identified as a Scottish passport on the front cover. They will be designed to meet the standard requirements for all EU passports and will be valid for international travel in the same way UK passports are at present. The Scottish Government will continue to recognise any currently valid UK passports until their expiry date.

CURRENT STATUS SCOTTISH CITIZENSHIP?
AT THE DATE OF INDEPENDENCE
British citizen habitually resident in Scotland on day one of independence Yes, automatically a Scottish citizen
British citizens born in Scotland but living outside of Scotland on day one of independence Yes, automatically a Scottish citizen
AFTER THE DATE OF INDEPENDENCE
Child born in Scotland to at least one parent who has Scottish citizenship or indefinite leave to remain at the time of their birth Yes, automatically a Scottish citizen
Child born outside Scotland to at least one parent who has Scottish citizenship Yes, automatically a Scottish citizen (the birth must be registered in Scotland to take effect)
British national living outside Scotland with at least one parent who qualifies for Scottish citizenship Can register as a Scottish citizen (will need to provide evidence to substantiate)
Citizens of any country, who have a parent or grandparent who qualifies for Scottish citizenship Can register as a Scottish citizen (will need to provide evidence to substantiate)
Migrants in Scotland legally May apply for naturalisation as a Scottish citizen (subject to meeting good character, residency and any other requirements set out under Scottish immigration law)
Citizens of any country who have spent at least ten years living in Scotland at any time and have an ongoing connection with Scotland May apply for naturalisation as a Scottish citizen (subject to meeting good character and other requirements set out under Scottish immigration law)