Responsible Agency

1.    Which agency/government body/authority is responsible for land registration?

The Registers of Scotland (RoS)

2.    If the responsibility for property registration is dealt with by an agency/authority, to which Government Department is it responsible to?

RoS is a non-ministerial department of the Scottish Administration.
Matters of property law and land use are devolved to the Scottish Parliament, allowing decisions to be made at a more local level. Although the UK Parliament retains the power to legislate on any matter it will not normally do so on devolved matters without the consent of the Scottish Parliament.

3.    How is the organization managed? Is there a Chief Executive/Head of the organization? If so is he/she supported by a senior management team/structure? How long is the Chief Executive Officer’s term of appointment? How often do changes arise in the senior management team structure?

RoS is headed by the Keeper of the Registers of Scotland. This is not a fixed-term post. The keeper is supported by both the RoS Board and the Executive Management Team (EMT).

4.    Describe the organisational framework. How is it deployed within the state territory? Is there one Central Service or is the organization divided into territorial units? If divided, does each unit have exclusive competence? Is there a centralised database?

RoS operates as a single organisation, with responsibility for the national property registers and other registers, and maintains offices and customer service centres in both Edinburgh and Glasgow. The Edinburgh site operates as the main office but neither site has exclusive competence. There is a centralised database.

5.    How is the agency/government body/authority funded?

  • Is it self-financing? If so, and excess of income over expenditure occurs, is that income retained by the agency?
  • Or if not self financing, is it financed directly from Government through the annual budgeted allocation for each Department/Agency?

RoS operates as a trading fund with its financial regime regulated by the Public Finance and Accountability (Scotland) Act 2000.

6.    Are the staff of the agency/government department/authority civil servants?

  •  If so are staff permanent or a combination of permanent/temporary positions?
  • Who has the responsibility for hiring of staff to be assigned? Is it through a central Government recruitment agency or hired directly by the agency/authority according to demand for services?
  • Are any of the land registration services contracted out? If yes, please state which services and type of service provider.

Staff at RoS are civil servants and predominantly hold permanent positions. Staff are hired by RoS directly as required. None of the land registration services provided by RoS are contracted out.

7.    Who is responsible for cadastral/mapping information? Is it the same organisation or a separate agency/department?

RoS map cadastral units on to the cadastral map. The cadastral map is based on a base map, being the Ordnance map as provided by Ordnance Survey. There is provision for RoS to utilise other base maps if required.

8.    What are the principal functions of the registering department/agency/authority?

To maintain and develop several property and court registers and to provide public access to up-to-date and reliable information from these registers.

9.    What are the key values/principles underpinning registration of title in your system?

Impartiality, professionalism, forward thinking and customer focus.

10.    What registration system of property do you have in your country (title/deed)?

The Land Register is a register of rights to land.