The Law Society of Scotland has become the latest body to part company with the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) over the 18 September referendum on Scottish independence.

The Society said today that it has resigned its membership of the business lobby group to protect its position of impartiality.

Glasgow-based CBI Scotland, which last month said that the Scottish government’s economic plan for independence ‘does not add up’, has registered with the Electoral Commission as a non-party participant in the referendum campaign. This allows it to spend up to £150,000 on referendum campaigning.

Lorna Jack, chief executive of the Law Society of Scotland, said: ‘Over the last three years, the Law Society has been an active but firmly non-partisan participant in the debate on Scotland’s future. We’ve asked difficult questions and raised issues that need addressed by both sides of the referendum campaign in order to better inform our members and the wider public.

'We do not believe we could credibly retain our impartiality whilst being a member of and actively contributing to another organisation which is formally registered with the Electoral Commission to campaign for a "no" vote. That is why we have resigned from the CBI today.'

The announcement follows the decision by universities and public bodies including Scottish Enterprise, Visit Scotland and STV to leave the CBI. The Scottish government said it was 'clearly inappropriate for government agencies to remain in membership of CBI'.