The European Court of Justice has held that the free movement of capital means that the purchaser cannot be required to cultivate and live on the farm. Nor is nationality a criterion, and anyone, irrespective of nationality or the place of the company registered office can acquire agricultural and forestry land in Austria, in particular in Tyrol. However, it must be guaranteed that the farm or forestry business will be run properly, not necessarily by the purchaser but also by a third party. Within Austria, the competent courts, in particular in Tyrol, do not follow this decision of the European Court of Justice, a fact that we have criticised on numerous occasions.
Dr. Fuith raised this problem in the opinion he prepared for the Tyrol Bar on the amendment to the Tyrolean Law on the Acquisition and Sale of Land. In his current Commentary on this piece of legislation in the light of European Union law, he set out the legal situation in more detail and from an academic point of view. As author of this standard work on land transactions in Tyrol, Dr. Fuith is extremely well versed in this issue both in theory and in practice.
Given our law firms’ contacts with the public authorities, in particular to those responsible for land transactions and regional planning in Tyrol, and our daily involvement with the topic both in practice and from the point of view of theory, our clients include not only potential purchasers of property in Austria, both Austrian and foreign nationals, but also notaries acting for their clients in matters of land transactions, in particular on the question of obtaining the required approvals and the contractual structure in the field of the acquisition and sale of land.