Transferring a lease

The requirement to obtain the consent of the minister to the transfer of a lease is determined by the legislation under which the lease was granted and the specific conditions and restrictions on title of the lease. These restrictions on transfer continue to apply to restricted leases under the Crown Lands Management Act 2016 (the Act).

Minister’s consent to the transfer must be obtained prior to the registration of a Real Property Transfer from NSW Land Registry Services. If a transfer form is lodged with NSW Land Registry Services to affect the transfer of a restricted lease without the letter of consent, the dealing will be requisitioned.

The Act prohibits the transfer of a lease if there is any debt to the Crown outstanding on the lease. For an application for minister’s consent to transfer to be considered, all debt to the Crown must be paid in full.

New waiver provisions

The new waiver provisions under the Act allows eligible landholder(s) to seek approval to the transfer of the leased land prior to putting the lease on the market and before details of the purchaser are known.

If the waiver application is successful the landholder will be issued with a waiver letter that can be submitted with a transfer form to NSW Land Registry Services. The waiver will be issued for a maximum of 12 months. After obtaining the waiver, the landholder can then find a purchaser, exchange contracts and hold settlement quickly.

Before seeking the waiver the landholder should ensure:

  • that all debt to the Crown for the holding/lease is paid in full
  • the lease conditions are being complied with (a field inspection may be undertaken).

For landholders not eligible for a waiver, they will need to go through the usual process of requiring the Minister for Lands and Forestry’s consent to the lease transfer prior to the settlement of a contract of sale.

To end or transfer a lease, contact us.