Organ and tissue donation in Scotland law change

09 February 2021

Article: 55/0604

From 26 March 2021, the law around organ and tissue donation in Scotland will change to an opt out system. This means that most adults who die in circumstances where they are able to donate, will be considered as having agreed to be a donor, unless they have recorded a decision not to. It is possible to opt out of the NHS Organ Donor Register at any time, before or after the law changes. For those who support donation, they can still choose to actively record their decision to be a donor on the register, and can also state which organs or tissue they wish to donate.

During February 2021, all households in Scotland will a receive a leaflet explaining the change in the law around organ and tissue donation, as well as an explanation of the choices people have. Everyone aged 16 or over is encouraged to read the leaflet in order to understand why it is important to make their donation decision, record it and share it with family and friends.

Source: Scottish Government, 31 January 2021