The Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) has announced that 100% of Single Application Forms (SAF) in 2018 were submitted online.
The total number of Single Applications received by DAERA before the deadline of midnight on Tuesday 15 May was 24,610.
Welcoming the 100% figure, Jason Foy, Head of Payments at DAERA, said: “Once again, it has been a real team effort this year between DAERA, individual farmers, and agents to support the online application process. It has been a three year transition to online and I’m pleased that 100% of farmers have now submitted their Single Application online.
“This positive result demonstrates that farmers recognise the advantages of our online application and this will allow the Department to consolidate and further improve the service we provide to the farming industry. Importantly, we have met our legal requirement to the European Commission to have 100% land claimed online by 2018.
“The SAF Advisory Service has dealt with more than 12,000 calls and online enquiries and DAERA staff have assisted more than 3,000 farmers through appointments at DAERA Direct Offices. Our digital services team have delivered an excellent online system that has provided a consistent and confident user experience and I would encourage farmers to continue to make use of all the various online tools available to them to aid their businesses.”
Notes to editors:
- The Single Application window opened on 1 March 2018 and closed at midnight on 15 May 2018.
- Applications received between 16 May - 11 June 2018 will be subject to a penalty. Payment will be reduced by 1% for each working day the application is late, except in cases of exceptional circumstances. For Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) there is a 3% late claim penalty on top of the 1% if you are applying to the Regional Reserve.
- Single Applications received by 15 May 2018 may be amended, before 31 May, to increase or decrease the area claimed, for e.g., adding or removing fields, without a financial penalty.
- From 01 June – 11 June: Single Applications already received may also be amended between these dates to increase the area claimed, for example, by adding fields, but applicants will be penalised on the amended fields. DAERA will reduce the payment by 1% for each working day the amendments to the application are late (except in cases of exceptional circumstances). For BPS there is an extra 3% late claim penalty on top of the 1% if applying to the Regional Reserve. Applicants can reduce fields/areas during this period without penalty.
- 11 June 2018 - This is the final date for receiving applications or increasing the area you have claimed on the Single Application. Applicants can still reduce the area claimed without penalty, e.g. by removing a field but only if DAERA has not already notified the applicant of a penalty or a planned inspection.
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