The Scottish Land Court is a Court of law. The Court’s jurisdiction is set firmly within the context of Scottish farming. It has authority to resolve a range of disputes, including disputes between landlords and tenants, in agriculture and crofting. The Court is based in Edinburgh, but holds hearings throughout Scotland.
The Scottish Government has launched a consultation to gather views on the future of the Scottish Land Court and the Lands Tribunal for Scotland. The main proposal relates to a possible amalgamation of the two bodies, which would be achieved by the incorporation of the Lands Tribunal for Scotland into an expanded Scottish Land Court. For more information see the Scottish Government’s consultation website: https://consult.gov.scot/justice/land-court-and-the-lands-tribunal/.
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The Court has a Chairman, who has the same status as a Court of Session judge, a Deputy Chairman, who is an advocate, and two Members of Court, who are experienced in farming and crofting matters. The current Chairman of the Court is Lord Minginish, who was installed at a ceremony at the Court on Friday 17 October 2014, following the retirement of Lord McGhie, who had been Chairman since 1996. The Deputy Chairman of the Court is Iain F Maclean, who took up office on 14 September 2015. The present agricultural Members of Court are John Smith, who was appointed in March 2006, and Tom Campbell, who joined the Court in February 2016. The Gaelic-speaking member of the Court, as required in terms of section 1(5) of the Scottish Land Court Act 1993, is Lord Minginish.
You will find detailed information on this web site about
- the jurisdictions and powers of the Court;
- the process by which the Court resolves disputes;
- what you need to do if you wish to use the Court to resolve a dispute;
- recent decisions made by the Court.
Whilst the name of the Court is the Scottish Land Court, the Court does not have universal jurisdiction to deal with all matters relating to land. In particular the Court does not have any jurisdiction to deal with the question of ownership and heritable title to land (which are dealt with by the ordinary courts, i.e. the Sheriff Court and the Court of Session), nor does the Court have any jurisdictions in relation to urban subjects.
There is a close relationship between the Land Court and the Lands Tribunal for Scotland: they share the same offices, and the Chairman of the Land Court is also President of the Lands Tribunal. However, the work they do is quite distinct, and they have separate administrative staff and systems.
The Scottish Land Court
126 George Street
DX ED 259
Tel: 0131 271 4360
Fax: 0131 271 4399
Email: SLCourtMailbox [at] scotcourtstribunals [dot] gov [dot] uk
The Land Court in pictures
George House (1); the entrance at No. 126 (2); the reception area (3); the courtroom, from the Bench (4); the courtroom, towards the Bench (5):