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Catherina Cunnane
Catherina Cunnanehttps://www.thatsfarming.com/
Catherina Cunnane hails from a sixth-generation drystock and specialised pedigree suckler enterprise in Co. Mayo. She currently holds the positions of editor and general manager at That's Farming, having joined the firm during its start-up phase in 2015.
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Turning 40 whilst completing the Green Cert: Will I be locked out of young farmer supports?

Age and educational requirements for DAFM young farmer supports were in the spotlight in a recent webinar on the new CAP period 2023-2027.

Under the next CAP, the Young Farmers’ Scheme will become the Complementary Income Support for Young Farmers, to support educated farmers under the age of 40 for a five-year stint.

The scheme is no longer based on payment entitlements but will be on eligible hectares, at a rate of approximately €180/eligible hectare/year to a maximum of 50.

Moreover, applicants must be the head of the holding, solely or jointly, for the first time or has set up such a holding during the five years preceding their application for the CIS-YF Scheme.

Green Cert query

During the virtual session, a listener submitted the following query to Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine officials regarding their own personal circumstances:

They said: “I am 39 years of age, and I turn 40 on August 31st, 2023. Currently, I am studying for the Green Cert, which will be completed by May 2023. I have been left land, a farm, and will be applying for a herd number in the coming weeks.”

“I am working if I can benefit from the Young Farmer Scheme’s successor, the new Complementary Income Support for Young Farmers when it comes around next year.”

Age and educational requirements

The question was then answered by Eddie Forde of the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, who explained:

“Firstly, on age, the requirement is that you are no more than 40 in the year of your first application under the scheme.”

“So, in that year, in 2023, if you reach 40 at any time from January 1st, 2023, up to and including December 31st, 2023, you meet the eligibility requirement with regards to age.”

“For 2023, in the situation outlined, that would be okay. On the educational qualification requirement, it was mentioned that it would be completed in May.”

“The educational qualification has to be fully completed by the closing date for receipt of applicants under the scheme, that is, all aspects of it done – practicals and course work.”

“The exams do not have to be corrected, and the results do not have to be confirmed by that date, but all the coursework has to be completed by that date.”

“In that situation, as part of the online application system, there is a form that you complete in conjunction with your course provider, and that states that you have completed all aspects of the course by the required date.”

“That is a placeholder, and as soon as the transcript of results is made available or the certificate has been awarded to you, you send them to the DAFM, and we can finalise your application from that point of view.”

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