The Irish Farmers' Association (IFA), in partnership with the Health Service Executive (HSE), will host an information webinar for farmers on recent changes to the Fair Deal Scheme on Tuesday 22 March at 8pm.
IFA farm family and social affairs chair Alice Doyle said: “This information webinar is an important opportunity for farm families to familiarise themselves with the Fair Deal Scheme and the conditions to qualify for the three-year cap on farm assets.”
The Nursing Homes Support Scheme, commonly referred to has the Fair Deal Scheme, provides financial support towards the cost of long-term nursing home care.
The amount paid towards nursing home fees depends on the individual’s income and assets.
Doyle said the changes introduced for farmers availing of the scheme in October 2021 mean that under financial assessment of the scheme, if they meet certain conditions, they will contribute up to 7.5% of the value of farm business assets each year towards the cost of care for a maximum of three years. She described this as the “three-year cap”.
According to the IFA, the conditions for farmers to qualify for the three-year cap include a requirement to have appointed a family successor, that this successor commits to running the farm or business for at least six years and the farm or business must have been actively run by you, your partner or your proposed family successor for at least three of the last five years.
“These changes to the scheme also apply to farmers that were in the scheme prior to the introduction of the changes in October 2021,” said Doyle.
She noted that such farmers can apply for the three-year cap on the farm assets if they meet the qualifying conditions, but warned they must submit their application to their local nursing home support scheme office before 20 April.
Doyle said that even if farmers are “not affected at the moment, it is important to understand the conditions of the scheme so you can better plan for your care needs as you get older”.
To register for the information webinar on Tuesday 22 March, visit https://www.ifa.ie/FD2022.