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Ifac reminds farmers of BPS deadline

May 18th, 2022 1:30 PM

There are some basic questions farmers should be asking themselves and their agri advisors before submitting their applications for the BPS payment, regarding their operations over the past year. (Photo: Shutterstock)

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IFAC, Ireland’s farming, food and agribusiness specialist professional services firm, is warning farmers not to miss the important BPS deadline on May 16th. 

Philip O’Connor, head of farm support at Ifac said: ‘May 16th is one of the most important dates for farmers in the farming year – it’s the deadline for declaring the land you are farming in the year 2022 that directly impacts the BPS monies you will receive in October–December. As has been widely shown in numerous farming reports, BPS is crucial to the financial viability of a lot of farms in Ireland. It can be an incredibly stressful time for farmers if this application is incorrect and monies are subsequently withheld at the end of the year.’

The following are some basic questions farmers should be asking themselves and their agri advisors before submitting their applications:

 Am I farming more/less land than last year? Am I leasing in/out land that wasn’t previously on my application?;

If leasing in/out new land, have I leased in/out the BPS correctly with this land?;

Have I bought/sold/inherited/gifted land in the last year? 

Have I transferred this in BPS correctly?;

Have I declared all of the land that I am farming correctly on my BPS application?; 

Have I changed my farming structure – eg, limited company, registered farm partnership, joint herd number?

‘If so, you must transfer BPS to the new structure –and always seek your accountant’s advice on how to transfer BPS, so as not to inadvertently incur taxes,’ said Philip.

The overarching advice from Ifac is to give yourself time – don’t leave this application until the last minute. 

Also, this year to support, the Department of Agriculture is running several in-person BPS clinics around the country before the deadline. 

Philip continued: ‘The best advice I can give farmers at this time is to employ a good agri advisor to help you complete your BPS application. This is always money very well spent considering the importance of the payment to the financial wellbeing of your farm. Also, if transferring BPS to a new entity ensure that both your accountant and agri advisor are aware of what’s happening. One of the most common mistakes with farmers changing business structure is that neither their accountant nor agri advisor is aware of what each one is applying for. This can have very serious impacts on Revenue and the Dept of Agriculture, and could result in significant taxes and losses in BPS if completed incorrectly.’ For further information contact Sarah at [email protected] or on 085 853 5647.

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