12 April 2002

IACSslip penalties

FARMERS may face increased penalties if they submit an inaccurate IACS application this year.

DEFRA has introduced new rules which will apply to farmers who submit forms which contain a large margin of error.

From 2002, if the difference between an area found and the area claimed is greater than 30% of the whole application then no aid will be paid for that year. If the difference is more than 50%, aid will be lost for the next three years. These penalties are in addition to existing ones.

Richard King, a Melton Mowbray-based consultant with Andersons, believes DEFRA was trying to stamp out fraud. "I dont think they want to be any more harsh on anyone making a genuine mistake. But it worrying as it does up the ante a bit.

"If people are doing it right it shouldnt worry them. But it is bound to get a few people who are making genuine mistakes."

IACS forms should now have arrived on farms. Farmers have until May 15 to complete them. &#42