Ifac urging Farmers not to miss the Basic Payment (BPS) Scheme Deadline

Ifac, the farming, food and agribusiness professional services firm, are reminding farmers not to miss the 15th May Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) deadline. This is the deadline for farmers to declare to the Department of Agriculture the land they are farming in the year 2019 in order to receive their BPS monies later in the year.

James Farrell, Partner at Ifac’s Offaly office outlines the importance of hitting this deadline and most important deadline of the year for farmers. Ifac are urging farmer to ensure they do not miss it as it could place you farm in financial trouble.

For over 40 years we have worked with farmers all over the country and we know that the BPS is crucial to the financial viability of a lot of farms. If the deadline is missed the application is wrong monies might be withheld for months, therefore any errors or late applications must be avoided at all costs. If you’ve bought, sold or leased land since your last BPS payment or if you’ve changed your farming structure in the past 12 months talk to an accountant to make sure you don’t miss out on monies due to you this year.

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

  1. Am I farming more / less land than last year?
  2. Am I leasing in /out land that wasn’t previously on application?
  3. If leasing in / out new land have I leased in /out the BPS correctly with this land?
  4. Have you bought / sold / inherited / gifted land in last year – Have I transferred in BPS correctly?
  5. Have I declared all of the land I am farming correctly on my BPS application
  6. Have I changed farming structure – Limited Company, Registered Farm Partnership, Joint herd number? a. If so I MUST transfer BPS to the new structure – ALWAYS seek your accountants advise on HOW to transfer BPS so as not to inadvertently incur taxes b. Have I declared all of the land correctly in the name of the new business structure?

We understand that this can be a very stressful time of the year on farms as deadlines approach. At IFAC we help thousands of farmers to make sure that they get their maximum entitlements each year.

If you are a farmer transferring the BPS to a new entity like a LTD company, partnership or joint herd, make sure that both your accountant and agri-advisor know what’s happening. One of the most common mistakes we find with farmers changing business structure is neither the accountant nor the agri-advisor have full knowledge of the changes taking place. This can have very serious implications for both Revenue and the Department of Agriculture and could result in significant taxes and losses in BPS if completed incorrectly. It is essential that farmers don’t take any risks. Engage a good advisor to help fill out the BPS application and it will be money very well spent considering the importance of the payment to the financial well-being of the farm.

Founded in 1975, ifac is over 40 years in business with 30 offices nationwide providing advice to farming, food and agribusinesses on tax, accountancy, pension planning, succession planning and other professional service areas to help clients to build and retain profitable, sustainable businesses.

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