Grazing Shares & Deemed Crofts

The Scottish Land Court recently issued a response to various questions placed before it by the Crofters Commission (now the Crofting Commission) in relation to grazing shares and deemed crofts.

It had been suggested that it was not possible to separate grazing shares from the croft or crofts to which they originally pertained, and that generally speaking, grazing share passed either with tenancies on assignation, or with croft land on sale. The Commission had obtained an Opinion from Counsel to this effect, and questions were put to the Court to clarify the position, in light of the situation across many of the crofting counties where grazing shares had been separated from their original crofts, or had been retained on sale or assignation.

The Court decided that grazing shares held in tenancy have the status of a deemed croft, and therefore can be separated from the crofts to which they originally pertained. These grazing shares can be held as a separate unit. This means a change in the advice which will now be given to crofters in relation to grazing shares. Whilst the matter was being considered by the Court, advice would have been to keep grazing shares and crofts as one unit, or at least not to create a situation where the two became separated. The Court’s ruling means that some options which it may have been thought were not available will now be open to anyone considering the disposal of a tenancy of croft land, coupled with the retention of a grazing share or share.

 

The information in this publication is based on our current understanding of the law. It has been produced for information purposes only. Professional advice should always be sought before taking any action.

Macleod & MacCallum cannot take any responsibility for loss incurred through acting or failing to act on the basis of anything contained in this publication.

 

July 18, 2014