STFA Welcomes Extension to Tenants’ Amnesty

Scottish Tenant Farmers Association

News Release

13th May 2020

STFA Welcomes Extension to Tenants’ Amnesty

The Scottish Tenant Farmers Association has welcomed today’s endorsement by the Scottish Parliament of Cabinet Secretary, Fergus Ewing’s decision to extend the tenants’ amnesty on improvements for a further six months until the 12th December 2020. The amnesty extension is being implemented through secondary legislation and will add a further six months to the current deadline.

Commenting on the news, STFA Chairman, Christopher Nicholson said; “This will be very good news for tenants who have been increasingly concerned that they would not be able to complete their amnesties before the June deadline due to difficulties they have been experiencing from the current Covid19 crisis. We commend the Cabinet Secretary for listening to STFA’s concerns and his officials for their prompt response to STFA’s request for an amnesty extension and finding parliamentary time to implement the necessary legislation.

“This does not mean, however, that tenants and their advisers should put their amnesties on the backburner, but they should continue to press ahead and get amnesties concluded in good time before the new deadline of 12th December. STFA has been advising tenants to proceed as though the amnesty would be expiring on June 12th so we hope that most tenants intending to submit an amnesty will already be close to finalising it, and we would now urge them not to take their feet off the gas. The next few weeks could be an ideal time to get the amnesty done, once IACS applications are completed and before the busy summer season begins, many may even have time on their hands with the cancellation of summer shows and other activities.

“The amnesty will also provide a breathing space for those whose amnesties are at an early stage, but time is short and experience has shown that at least six months is needed to complete an amnesty, even in good times. Most land agents are operating from home and STFA believes most of the paperwork could be attended to despite the lockdown period. We would encourage landlords’ and tenants’ agents to prioritise completion of amnesties and advise any tenant experiencing difficulties in contacting or receiving a response from their landlord’s agent to inform Bob McIntosh, the TFC, and/or STFA immediately.”

For further information, please contact:

Christopher Nicholson:   01988 500423

Angus McCall:                   07767 756840