Plans to close 10 sheriff courts around the country, including Stonehaven Sheriff Court, have been approved by the Scottish government.
The changes, proposed by the Scottish Court Service, recommends the closure of Stonehaven Sheriff Court in May 2014.
The recommendations have been accepted by ministers and must now be approved by MSPs.
A spokesperson for the Scottish Court Service said: “The Justice Secretary has now sent draft Orders to the Scottish Court Service and the Lord President which will enable the necessary legislative changes to be made in the Scottish Parliament to implement the proposed court closures.
“The Scottish Court Service will be required to consult with relevant key stakeholders on these Orders before deciding whether to formally consent. Once approved, the Orders will be laid in the Scottish Parliament where they will be considered by the Justice Committee.”