Farmers across England are set to benefit from simpler and more proportionate penalties for small over-claims of land under the Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) in 2020.
As part of measures to make BPS less complicated, the changes will see Government reduce the penalty applied by the Rural Payments Agency (RPA) for over-claims on more than 2 hectares or 3 per cent of the area determined, to 0.75 times the size of the over-claim.
Welcoming the change to the penalty system, RPA chief executive Paul Caldwell said: “I am pleased to announce that changes to the BPS over-claim penalties will come into effect for the 2020 scheme.
“We want to continue improving the delivery of our schemes to farmers and changes to the way these penalties are calculated will mean farmers will feel the benefit come December when payments are made.”
The NFU’s senior BPS adviser Richard Wordsworth echoed this but reminded farmers must continue to ‘carefully review’ their claims during the year in order to avoid the penalty regime, adding: “This means after submission, as that is when the inspections take place."
Further guidance can be found on the RPA website, here.