NFU Scotland Welcomes Provisions For Tenancy Relinquishment & Assignation

The changes will help tenants retire or leave their tenancy, and provide new opportunities for next generation farmers

NFU Scotland welcomes that provisions relating to the relinquishment and assignation of secure 1991 Act tenancies came into force on the 28 February.

These are the latest elements from the Land Reform Act passed in 2016 to go live and follows significant work by stakeholders alongside the Scottish Government.

The provisions will provide tenant farmers who wish to retire and have no successor with an additional option to offer their tenancy back to the landlord at a price determined by means of a formula set out in the legislation. If the landlord does not take up this offer, the tenancy will then go onto the market for a new entrant or progressing farmer.

It does, however, remain important for tenant farmers to take professional advice as assignation is already available – this is an additional provision.

Head of Policy Team at NFU Scotland, Gemma Cooper said: “The enactment of these regulations has been long awaited by tenants within the sector, some of whom have been delaying making important decisions until this option was made available to them.
“It is important to note that this new option, which allows the landlord first refusal to buy back the tenancy, is not the only option available within the legislation. It is already possible for parties to reach a deal about assignment of a tenancy, so it is important that parties who are considering using this new option seek professional advice to ensure that they choose the best route for their own circumstances.
“There have been great strides made with landlord and tenant relations in Scotland in recent years.  This is due to the Tenant Farming Commissioner, greater open discussion, and an emphasis on increased transparency.
“I am hopeful that the sector can build on this and that we may at last see some movement allowing prospective or progressing tenants to get their foot in the door, and tenants wishing to retire the opportunity to do so with dignity.”

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