Revenue Note for Guidance

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Revenue Note for Guidance

667D Succession farm partnerships

Summary

This section provides a “succession tax credit” of €5,000 per annum in respect of succession farm partnerships. This is a succession planning initiative to encourage farmers to form partnerships with young trained farmers and to transfer ownership of the farm, within a specified period, to that young trained farmer. This provisions applies only to individuals, a company cannot enter a succession partnership.

Details

Register

A primary participant may apply to enter a registered farm partnership on the register of succession farm partnerships and shall comply with all requirements relating to such application.

Conditions

A registered farm partnership must comply with the following conditions in order to be entered on the register:

  • ➢ only individuals may be partners, of which there are at least two,
  • ➢ at least one partner is a person who has been farming on at least 3 hectares of farming land owned or leased by that person for at least 2 years immediately preceding the date of formation of the partnership. Each of the other partners must be under 40 years of age, a trained farmer and entitled to at least 20% of the profits of the partnership,
  • ➢ a business plan in respect of the farm partnership must have been submitted to, and approved by, the Minister,
  • ➢ the farmer shall agree to sell or transfer at least 80% of the farm assets to one or more of the successors within 3 to 10 years from the date an application is made to enter the partnership on the register,
  • ➢ the terms of the succession agreement, which may or may not be legally binding, shall include:
    • details of the farm assets of the partnership,
    • any conditions to which the transfer or sale will be subject,
    • the year in which the transfer or sale will take place, and
    • any other terms which the successor and farmer agree to, including any terms in relation to the farm assets, the conduct of the farming trade or the creation of any rights of residence in dwellings on the farm land.

Jointly owned or farmed farm assets

This subsection sets out certain rules where farm assets are jointly owned or farmed prior to the formation of the succession farm partnership. Each person who jointly owns or holds an interest in the farm assets must agree to the transfer of those assets in accordance with the agreement under subsection 2(d). Each individual who jointly farms the land which is to be transferred may become a partner in the partnership notwithstanding that the individual may be a non-active partner.

Joint transfer to successor and spouse/civil partner

A farmer may form a succession farm partnership to transfer or sell farm assets jointly to a successor and the successor’s spouse/civil partner even if the spouse/civil partner would be a non-active partner.

Register

The Minister will only register a succession farm partnership where the partnership has satisfied all the qualifying conditions.

Succession tax credit

Each partner in the succession farm partnership shall be entitled to a tax credit, referred to as a succession tax credit, for the year of assessment in which the registration takes place and each of the 4 years immediately following that year, which is the lesser of

  1. €5,000 per year of assessment divided between the partners in accordance with their profit sharing ratio under their partnership agreement, or
  2. The assessable profits (after deducting any capital allowances related to that trade) of that partner’s several trade.

No partner in a succession farm partnership can claim the succession tax credit once a successor has reached the age of 40.

If the agreed transfer of the farm assets does not take place the succession tax credit claimed by all partners will be clawed back from the farmer. However where it is shown to the satisfaction of a Revenue officer that the farm assets were not transferred as the successor would not complete the transfer, the succession tax credit will be clawed-back from the successor. Where the farm assets were not transferred due to mutual agreement between the parties, the succession tax credit may be clawed back from the party who claimed the credit.

Power to make regulations

The Minister may make regulations to provide for the establishment and maintenance of a register of succession farm partnerships.

EU Requirements

A lifetime ceiling of €70,000 applies for EU State Aid purposes to the amount of aid granted to a young trained farmer under the Agricultural Block Exemption Regulation (paragraph 7 of Article 18 of the Commission Regulation (EU) No. 702/2014). This means that the amount of tax relief received by a partner in a succession farm partnership must be aggregated across the relevant schemes: i.e. section 667D, section 667B and section 81AA SDCA 1999. The cash equivalent of the tax relief received cannot exceed €70,000.

Relevant Date: Finance Act 2020