We have updated OSCR Online - click here for more information on how to submit your annual return

Does your charity own land and property in Scotland?

22 Feb 2024

If your charity owns, or has an interest in, land and property in Scotland, there is new legislation which may apply to you.

The Register of Persons with a Controlled Interest in Land (RCI) is a new public register managed by the Registers of Scotland (RoS). While there are existing Registers in Scotland which provide details of the owner or tenant of land and property in Scotland these Registers do not detail who can significantly influence or control the owner or tenant’s decisions about the land. The RCI aims to improve transparency of land ownership in Scotland by providing this information.

The RCI contains information about:

  • the land or property
  • the owner or tenants
  • any person who has a controlling interest over the land.

Who needs to register?

If you are the owner or a tenant with a lease of more than 20 years, you are known as the recorded person. Your details are usually already held publicly elsewhere, such as in the Land Register of Scotland.

You will only need to make an entry in the RCI if another person or entity has significant control or influence over any decision you make in relation to the land or property. These people are known as associates.

The RoS website contains lots of information to help you understand whether or not you need to register. You can use their RCI self-assessment tool to check if you need to register.

Legal requirement

If you are the Recorded Person and there is a person with significant interest and control over decisions about the land or property (an Associate) you must make an entry in the RCI. The deadline for making an entry is 1st April 2024.

Do charities need to register?

If your charity is a Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisation (SCIO), a cross border Charitable Incorporated Organisation (CIO) or a company, you will be exempt because the property will be held in the name of the SCIO, CIO  or company and the necessary information is publicly available elsewhere.

If your charity is an unincorporated association or a trust, and land or property is held on its behalf by the committee or trustees, you might need to register. There is helpful RoS guidance on land held for Trusts and Unincorporated Associations and when registration is required.

What do I need to do?

If you think these regulations may apply to you or your charity, you need to:

  1. Start by using the RCI self-assessment tool to check if you need to register.
  2. Read the RoS guidance to find out who needs to register, how to submit an entry and more.
  3. Create an entry before the deadline of 1 April 2024.

More guidance and support

If you have any questions or need further help, please visit the help and support section of the RoS website or contact Registers of Scotland directly.

You can also find further support here: