The Scottish Government has announced that the Lands Tribunal for Scotland and the Scottish Land Court will be merged into one body.

This follows public consultation last year, and the new entity will be an expanded Land Court which the government believes will be more beneficial to users. The new Land Court will decided cases involving land law and the processes are promised to be simpler, clearer and easier.

Minister for Community Safety Ash Denham said: “This is very good news for users of the Scottish Land Court and the Lands Tribunal for Scotland. Incorporating the two bodies into an expanded Scottish Land Court is an important step forward in providing a more efficient service and offering greater clarity to those who presently use them. 

“Users will be able to benefit from a one stop shop, providing a more streamlined process that will be clearer and easier to understand and navigate.

“While modernisation will deliver significant improvements, a very important part of this change will be to ensure that the traditional character and the respect both bodies have for dealing with various types of dispute are retained by the reformed court.”

Lord Minginish, Chair of the Scottish Land Court and President of the Lands Tribunal for Scotland, said “I am delighted that the Scottish Government has decided to proceed with the unification of the two bodies over which I preside, following the proposals that I brought forward shortly after my appointment as Chair of the Land Court and President of the Lands Tribunal.  

“Both the Tribunal and the Court have always been valued by their users, and I believe this change will provide a better service to the public, providing a one stop shop for most land issues.

“It will also allow the personnel and talents which each of these bodies possesses to be available across the entire spectrum of their jurisdictions, putting an end to current statutory anomalies whereby certain questions can get referred from one body to the other.

“Going forward, the best attributes of both the Court and Tribunal will be preserved to deliver a quality land law litigation service across Scotland.”