Legal news

Long leases bill

Legislation to complete a programme of property law reform was completed on 28th June.

The Long Leases (Scotland) Bill will bring an end to ultra-long leases (ie those let for more than 175 years) by converting them to ownership.

The Bill formed part of a programme of property law reform put forward by the Scottish Law Commission. This included the ending of feudal tenure in 2004 through the Abolition of Feudal Tenure etc (Scotland) Act 2000.

The Bill:

* Converts ultra-long leases to ownership

* Protects landlords' rights by providing for compensatory and additional payments.

* Moves away from an unnecessarily complex form of land tenure


“Clarifying the law makes life easier for tenants in ultra-long leases and for lenders and solicitors engaged in transactions relating to the properties,” said Environment Minister Stewart Stevenson. “This legislation will simplify property law and convert virtual ownership into actual ownership.”

An eligible ultra-long lease is one that was let for more than 175 years and, at the Appointed Day, has more than 175 years left to run (non-residential leases) or has more than 100 years left to run (residential leases). The Bill will have full effect on the Appointed Day. The current intention is that the Appointed Day will be Martinmas (28th November) 2015.

The Scottish Government estimates that there are around 9,000 ultra-long leases in Scotland.


June  2012


  • Long leases bill (28 June 2012)
  • Consultation on reform of insurance law (26 June 2012)
  • New Managing Partner and Chairman for Dundas & Wilson (25 June 2012)
  • A ‘more open and just’ justice system (21 June 2012)
  • Appointment of new Lord Justice Clerk (20 June 2012)
  • EU strategy against human trafficking (19 June 2012)
  • More efficient workplace dispute resolution (15 June 2012)
  • Commissioner issues first decisions (13 June 2012)
  • Changes to the international patent system (11 June 2012)
  • Appointment of Lord President and Senators (08 June 2012)
  • Scrapping metal theft (06 June 2012)
  • Proposed new EU Regulation re electronic ID schemes (05 June 2012)