The following Commercial practice note Produced in partnership with David Blair of Anderson Strathern provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:
The rules regarding execution of documents governed by the laws of Scotland are contained in:
the Requirements of Writing (Scotland) Act 1995 (RW(S)A 1995), and
the Legal Writings (Counterparts and Delivery) (Scotland) Act 2015 (LW(CD)(S)A 2015)
This Practice Note considers both the traditional method of execution and execution by counterpart under Scots law.
In Scotland, the general rule is that writing is not required to create a contract or a unilateral obligation or a trust.
Writing is required for the following exceptions to that general rule:
contracts or unilateral obligations to create, transfer, vary or end a real right in land (excluding tenancies or rights of occupation for less than a year and private residential tenancies)
creating, transferring, varying or ending a real right in land
an agreement between adjoining owners to vary their mutual boundary
a gratuitous unilateral obligation (other than one in the course of business) and
a person making a will or becoming trustee of their own property
The remainder of this Practice Note relates to what is required for execution of documents for such excepted categories where a hard copy physical document, is to be signed. See also, Practice Note: Virtual execution under Scots law.
Valid execution is achieved by the party (in the case of a unilateral document) or the parties (to a
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