Unauthorised Structures on Private Agricultural Land
Lands Department (LandsD) is responsible for, among other land administration, lease enforcement duties.
In the New Territories, much of the land is held privately under 'Old Schedule' lots contained within the Block Government Lease and described as 'agricultural land'. Erection of structure on private agricultural land without permission is a breach of lease conditions.
If a breach of lease conditions is detected, the LandsD may take appropriate lease enforcement actions. LandsD will normally issue a warning letter to the owner concerned requesting rectification of the lease breach within a specified time. If the owner does not rectify the breach by the deadline, LandsD may register the warning letter at the Land Registry, commonly known as "imposing an encumbrance". If the seriousness of the breach warrants further action, for instance where the breach poses a serious threat to public safety, LandsD may proceed with re-entry of the lot or vesting of the relevant interest to Government.
A land lease is a private contract and is enforced by LandsD in its capacity as the landlord and a party to the contract. Actions taken by LandsD in such a capacity do not involve prosecution.
Hyperlinks connecting ISD’s website for the Press Releases as below :
- "LCQ22: Illegal structures on private land for residential purposes" on 26 March 2014
- "Lands Department steps up enforcement against unauthorised structures on private agricultural land (with photos)" on 29 May 2014
- "Lands Department steps up enforcement and public education in respect of unauthorised structures on private agricultural land" on 27 October 2014
- "Lands Department continues to take enforcement actions against unauthorised structures on private agricultural land" on 12 August 2015
- "Lands Department continues enforcement action against unauthorised structures on private agricultural land" on 24 April 2017