Hearts have put Cove Rangers’ place in League One next season in doubt after launching a court action to stop the Aberdeen side being promoted.
The Tynecastle side and Partick Thistle are challenging their relegations from the Scottish Premiership and Championship respectively.
They have submitted a petition with the Court of Session contesting their demotions after only 16 of the 42 SPFL sides backed a permanent switch to a 14-10-10-10 set-up in an indicative vote on Monday that would have kept them up.
But it has emerged that as part of their court action, legal papers have been served on Championship winners Dundee United, League One winners Raith Rovers and Cove Rangers, who won League Two in their first SPFL season.
If Hearts and Thistle fail to scrap promotion and relegation for the abandoned 2019-20 season, the clubs want £10 million in compensation.
Hearts are seeking £8m for dropping into the Championship with the second tier’s season not due to start until October 17 and cut from 36 to 27 games. And Partick are seeking £2m with no date yet determined for when League One gets under way.
The SPFL has seven days to lodge a response.
Representatives of Dundee United, Raith and Cove have all contacted the SPFL on the matter and are awaiting guidance.
Hearts were four points adrift in the Premiership with eight matches left when the season halted in March. Thistle were two points off the bottom in the Championship with a game in hand.
The Jambos began the legal process after Monday’s decision and Thistle joined them on Tuesday, funded by an unnamed source.
Hearts owner Ann Budge said in a statement earlier this week: “Unfortunately, Scottish football has been unable to pull together at this time of national crisis to prevent the need for this legal challenge.
“For clarity, our petition does not seek to set aside or unravel the fee payments made to clubs, nor indeed the declaration of champions, or the nomination of clubs who will participate in European competition.
“Instead, the petition primarily seeks to reduce the unfair resolution insofar as it changed the SPFL’s rules on promotion and relegation.
“If that remedy is not granted by the court, we seek, in the alternative, awards of compensation relative to the significant financial loss which the unfair relegations will visit upon us.”
No one from Cove Rangers was available to comment about the matter.