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Third Party Rights Bill introduced

1 February 2017

A bill to reform contract law on third party rights has been introduced to the Scottish Parliament.

The Contract (Third Party Rights) (Scotland) Bill will restate this branch of Scots contract law, which is currently contained in the common law, in modern terms, in line with recommendations of the Scottish Law Commission in a report published last year.

Third party rights arise when someone who is not party to a contract acquires rights under the contract. The bill will provide third parties with the same remedies as a contracting party (subject to exceptions), set out when third party rights can be modified or cancelled, and enable third parties to access arbitration to resolve disputes in certain circumstances.

The bill will be proposed for the special Scottish Parliament procedure for non-contentious law reform measures.

Minister for Legal Affairs Annabelle Ewing commented: “This is an area of law that is ripe for reform and this bill will enable the creation of third party rights which may be beneficial to individuals and families as well as businesses.

“Reform will remove a practical barrier for commercial transactions, and keep Scots law fit for purpose by making sure it is flexible enough for modern day expectations.”

Click here to access the bill and related papers.


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