Eviction if you’re a crofting tenant
If your landlord wants to evict you from your croft, they must get an order from the land court. You can ask the land court to help you resolve disputes with your landlord.
Eviction action can be started by:
the Crofting Commission
Scottish Government ministers, if you borrowed a government loan for crofting
Eviction by your landlord
Your landlord can evict you if you’ve:
not paid your rent for a year
misused or neglected the land
In most cases, your landlord must send you a written eviction notice. They must give you time to resolve any issues if you’ve broken the statutory conditions.
Your landlord does not need to give you written notice if you’ve neglected the land. They can apply to the land court for an eviction order. The court must tell you about any hearing.
Going to the land court
The land court deals with disputes in agricultural tenancies. In court, you’ll have a chance to make your case and explain why you should not be evicted.
If the court decides to grant an order of eviction, they will:
end your tenancy
declare the croft to be vacant
remove you from the croft
Eviction by resumption
This means taking the land back and using it for something other than crofting. Your landlord can only take back your croft with good reason.
Your landlord does not need to give you any written notice that they are resuming the croft.
They must apply to the land court and inform the Crofting Commission. The commission can support or oppose the landlord’s application.
If your croft is resumed, you could get compensation. This can be a payment or an offer of a different croft of the same value.
If only part of the land is being resumed, your rent can be reduced.
Eviction by the Crofting Commission
The Crofting Commission can evict you if you’re:
not living on the land
not working the land properly, for example, neglecting to cultivate it or put it to good use
It’s rare for the commission to evict crofting tenants. They should try to come to a voluntary agreement with you. This should give you time to address their concerns.
A voluntary agreement could be:
subletting the land to someone else while you’re not living there
you buying the croft and getting it decrofted
assigning the tenancy to someone else
If you cannot come to an agreement, the commission can make an order to end your tenancy. They must give you 6 months’ notice.
You can object and ask for a hearing if you want to keep the tenancy.
Eviction by Scottish Government ministers
Scottish ministers can apply to the land court for your eviction if you’ve:
abandoned your croft
broken the statutory conditions of crofting, not including paying rent
broken a condition of the repayment of your Scottish Government loan
Compensation if you’re evicted from a croft
You could get compensation if you’ve made permanent improvements to the land.
Improvements are buildings or fixtures that you have built, provided or made better. This could include building work, walls, fencing, roads or anything else that adds value to the croft for the purposes of crofting.
To get compensation all of the following must apply. You must have:
paid for the improvements
made improvements suitable for the croft
made improvements that you were not contractually obliged to make
made the improvements without receiving any payment or a rent reduction in return
Your landlord can also ask you for compensation if you leave the croft in a state of deterioration or disrepair.
If you and your landlord cannot agree on compensation, you can ask the land court to decide. The Crofting Commission or a solicitor can help you calculate the compensation.
Get legal help to stop or delay your eviction
Contact a solicitor if you receive a notice to attend a court hearing or a notice of eviction. They can help you negotiate to prevent an eviction, or represent you in court.
You can also contact:
the Crofting Commission for advice and support
RSABI helpline for support for farmers and crofters
the Scottish Crofting Federation who have a legal helpline for members
Finding somewhere else to live
Start looking for a new home as soon as you can if you’re being evicted.
You can try:
You can also contact the council and tell them you're being evicted. They have a duty to help if you're at risk of homelessness.
Check our advice on making a homeless application.
If you’re not a British or Irish citizen
Your rights to homeless help could be different. Check our advice on how your immigration status affects your housing options.
Last updated: 3 October 2023