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HMRC internal manual

Capital Gains Manual

Found objects and treasure: ownership: treasure: Treasure Act rewards

Any find should be notified to the Coroner who may hold an inquest to decide if the object is treasure.

If treasure is retained by the Crown it is valued. Ex gratia rewards totalling up to this amount may then be paid to the finder, the occupier of the land, anyone having an interest in the land, and anyone notifying the Coroner that they have acquired treasure not previously notified. The rewards made will reflect all the circumstances of the find but commonly the value of the object will be paid divided 50:50 between the landowner and the finder.

If treasure is not retained, the Crown’s title is disclaimed and the object treated as though it had never become Crown property. The Coroner will return the find to the finder unless either the occupier of the land or the landowner objects. In the case of an objection the Coroner will retain the find until the parties have resolved between themselves the question of title.

Treasure found in the Duchies of Lancaster or Cornwall, or in the Cities of Bristol or London may vest in that Duchy or City rather than in the Crown. It is anticipated, however, that the same ex gratia rewards will be made where treasure is retained.