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Fair Deal Scheme & Impact on Farm

  • 10-01-2022 12:29pm
    Registered Users Posts: 658 ✭✭✭ bemak

    Unfortunately we are currently in the position of looking for nursing home care for my father who has dementia. We knew this day would come but we didn't expect it to come so quickly.

    The farm was transferred to me in 2020 in anticipation of this but as the transfer is within the past 5 years it will be assessed as part of the fair deal application. I'm not a farmer myself, the land is currently being leased and has been for the past 10+ years.

    If we ignore the '3 year cap' for now (as I'm not farming the land myself), can we reassess the situation in 3 years time when the farm will be outside the 5 year assessment period or will the farm be forever included in the assessment going forward? My hope is to retain the farm and pass it on to the next generation - I really don't want to have to sell it to cover the cost of care which is my biggest fear.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,200 ✭✭✭ Furze99

    Can only comment re elderly relative with house and in nursing home. Value of property was included in the initial calculation. But was reassessed after a few years and removed.

    Re your situation, if you're not farming the land and presumably no one else from present generation interested, why would you not sell and pass the land onto someone who would make a living farming it? Possible that someone in next generation might take an interest but in reality less likely as no role model to follow. Just a thought.

  • Registered Users Posts: 658 ✭✭✭ bemak

    I'm not farming it at present but it's something I wouldn't mind getting into in the future. The farm is small. 40 acres. It's been in the family for generations too - I'd rather not be the one to break the chain!

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,087 ✭✭✭ Dinzee Conlee

    I can’t comment on the fair deal aspect.

    But did I not read on another thread that farmland is a great asset transfer between generations. So it would seem there are good financial reasons to hold onto it, aside from any emotional reasons.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,284 ✭✭✭ alps

    You need professional advise on this..solicitor and accountant. Can say to you, BUT IM NOT SURE, that if you can cover nursing home costs for the 3 years, that he will then be able to apply for the fair deal scheme without recourse to the farm. If you are to cover this cost, and he may be abke to cover a share himself, which will be colossal, but tax allowable to you, it may be the way to go.

    Very good help required.. If your own professionals fail you, I would be inclined to ring the likes of Aisling Meehen Solr..

  • Registered Users Posts: 658 ✭✭✭ bemak

    Thanks for that. 3 years will be tough but it might be the pill to swallow if we are in the clear after that.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,200 ✭✭✭ Furze99

    Depends on how much spare cash there is and without being disrespectful in any way, how long your father lives. One of the problems of being asset rich but relatively speaking cash poor. Needs careful thought and even then, factors outside your control.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,200 ✭✭✭ Furze99

    True but there's also an issue for younger farmers who need land and not just leasing perpetually.

  • Registered Users Posts: 658 ✭✭✭ bemak

    This is it exactly. Asset rich, cash poor. Look I appreciate there is an issue for younger farmers seeking land and not leasing as you mention. I think there's probably a broader issue of making farming a viable business that young people will be attracted into also. I take your point but in this instance the sale of the farm isn't an option for us

  • Registered Users Posts: 58 ✭✭ viewer78

  • Registered Users Posts: 658 ✭✭✭ bemak

    I'm not looking to play the system. The fair deal is actually very fair in how it works. I just wanted to know if after 3 years if the farm is then discounted as part of the assessment. As someone already noted above, there are a lot of other variables out there and we mightn't even see out the 3 years if things deteriorate further. I suppose I just want to know what the next 5 years is like so that I can plan for it financially as it is quite a hit if we're to try and hold onto the family farm.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 658 ✭✭✭ bemak

  • Registered Users Posts: 10,377 ✭✭✭✭ wrangler

    The financial assessment includes any transfers you made in the previous five years so ypu'll have to wait for five years after date of transfer before you apply.

    Its very unfair, everyone should have free nuring home care or no one should have it

  • Registered Users Posts: 467 ✭✭ Packrat

    Tom Murray is a dedicated fair deal planner.

    He's the most knowledgeable person in the country on this. Deals with farms every day.

    He'd do a zoom meeting with you and family at a reasonable charge.

    Its hard to get your head round all the rules.

    We are about 3 months ahead of you with exactly the same situation but I'm actively farming in a long term lease.

  • Registered Users Posts: 4,284 ✭✭✭ alps

    Very helpful Packrat..👍👍

  • Registered Users Posts: 156 ✭✭ Belongamick

    Sorry to hear about you dad and the family situation.

    As already mentioned, get professional advise from a good solicitor and accountant.

    Equally important is to get a bit of information yourself - citizens advice is quite good and up to date - hope this link works.

    As regards the three year cap on farms and business:

    Farms and businesses

    From 20 October 2021, family-owned farms and businesses can be included in the ‘3-year cap' if they meet some conditions, including that:

    You need to apply using the Fair Deal application form (pdf) if you want your farm or business to be included in the ‘3-year cap'.

    I'm fairly sure that you can apply for the Fair Deal scheme at any stage that makes sense for you - need professional advise for the finer details.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,690 ✭✭✭ paddysdream

    Friend of mine went through this a few years ago .

    Tried the" pay as you go " for a few months but nursing home fees are c.1k a week so impossible to sustain that long term on a normal income .

    In the end went into the "Fair Deal" scheme or whatever it was called then .They told me that it was very involved .Leasing the parents portion of the farm (friend owned a good portion of it for a number of years previous ) had to be done at market rates .All the parents assets were assessed including savings ,lease income ,pension ,shares etc .

    He told me a lot of Revenue and legal involvement .From memory it was something like a charge on the assets meaning that they had to be paid on the parents death before anything could be done with the land ,house etc .

    Do know it came to a serious chunk of change ,somewhere in the region of 200k or so .

    From my understanding of it from the outside I imagine professional advice ,both legal and financial ,would be of the utmost importance .

  • Registered Users Posts: 658 ✭✭✭ bemak

    Thanks for that. Think it might be exactly what we need. I think I know what we need to do but at least it can be put to an advisor and verified etc.

    Thanks all for your help and advice