Agricultural Law

by Kilpatrick+Walker, Ayrshire's Legal Specialists

Farm Purchases and Sales

At K+W our Partners have been trusted to buy and sell farms and rural properties for our clients for over 30 years. Carefully guiding you through the entire transaction, from noting interest at the very beginning, to registering your title after settlement.

We work closely with your other professional advisers, including estate agents, accountants and your bank, to make sure that the contract for the purchase or sale is what is right for you, and, that you are kept regularly advised throughout the deal.

Servitudes

Servitude rights of access over your land can be particularly complicated, particularly if they have not been properly drawn up and created.

Many service providers will offer landowners standardised agreements and want wide servitude rights to run their cables and pipes across your land, in exchange for a small payment. They will want rights of access to carry out maintenance and repairs. Getting specialist advice to ensure you know what rights you are being asked to grant over your land is vitally important.

Agricultural Tenancies

The law surrounding Agricultural Tenancies is complicated, however, at K+W, we have vast experience acting on behalf of both Landlords and Tenant Farmers.

We regularly advise on the specific provisions relating to Short Limited Duration Tenancies (SLDTs), on Limited Duration Tenancies (LTDs) and on more straightforward Grazing Lets.  We can also assist with Rent Reviews and are on hand to help with the difficult areas of statutory succession and the termination of tenancies.

Renewables

The Scottish Government has set ambitious targets for the renewable energy sector in Scotland. This has presented our farming clients with the opportunity to diversify into the renewable energy market and generate a new income stream for their business.

We regularly advise landowner clients across Ayrshire and beyond, negotiating with developers on their behalf, to agree lucrative renewable energy deals. We explain the terms of what are complicated Agreements and Leases, making sure that our clients fully understand their commitment.

Business Structures

K+W are experts at advising on the various business structures available to landowners and farmers.  Our farming clients use different business structures, depending on their circumstances, including Sole Traders, Partnerships and Limited Companies. We can help you decided on which set up is right for your circumstances.

Most commonly, farming families trade as a Partnership and it is vital to get a well-drafted and well-considered Partnership Agreement in place.  We regularly advise clients on what to include in their Partnership Agreements, and work with their accountants to cover the division of profits and losses, retirement from the Partnership and ownership of assets.

Succession

K+W recognise that it may be difficult to have discussions about succession planning for your business, particularly when you are busy with the day to day running of the business itself.

It is usually the case with family businesses that the head of that business hopes to pass it on to future generations. It is vitally important, particularly for family businesses, that you not only have a succession plan in place for the business, but also, that the succession plan is adequate.