Around 1,500 farmers are expected to receive a bridging payment this month as they have still not had their BPS 2016 money.
The Rural Payments Agency (RPA) has not yet confirmed the figure, but the NFU has made an estimate based on member feedback and previous patterns of RPA behaviour.
Guy Smith, the union’s vice president, said if farmers have not received their payment by the end of this week, it is safe to assume they are in the bridging payment category.
“We are urging the RPA to get those bridging payments out sooner rather than later”, he added.
“We think they should be paid this week or next week, not some time in April.”
An RPA spokesman said the agency would be making bridging payments from the beginning of April.
The RPA is encouraging farmers to apply online for BPS 2017 now to ensure applications are submitted before the deadline – midnight on May 15 2017.
Applying online means that farmers and agents can quickly check and update existing personal and business details, as well as view and transfer land and entitlements.
Anyone who did not apply online in 2016 and did not use an agent should have received a paper form.
Farmers and anyone helping them with their claim can find step-by-step guides on transferring land, transferring entitlements and a general overview of how to apply online in the RPA’s ‘How to’ videos. Further guidance and scheme rules can be found on GOV.UK.
On-screen help is also available, going through the application process screen by screen. A copy of this on-screen guide is also available for download or print.
The application deadline for BPS 2017 is midnight on May 15 2017. Late applications will be accepted until June 9, but will incur a penalty.
More information on how to claim or amend applications in the penalty claim period can be found in the Key Dates section of the 2017 guidance.