Agricultural and Farm Law

Walsh & Partners specialise in providing legal services to the farming community and landowners. We provide clear and practical advice to members of the farming and agricultural sectors.

We have particular expertise in the area of agricultural law with Karen Walsh, Solicitor, hailing from a farming background and having a unique understanding of agricultural issues and the practicalities of day-to-day farming. She writes a weekly legal column for the Irish Examiner’s Farming Supplement. We provide advices to farmers on a range of legal issues from divorce proceedings to contract rearing of heifer’s agreements to family farm transfers and succession planning. To find out more information please visit our News Page or www.farmlaw.ie

Walsh & Partners has advised farmers, landowners and agricultural businesses on a wide range of legal issues including the following:

  • Agricultural Leases
  • Collaborative Farming Legal Issues
  • Contract Heifer Rearing Agreements
  • Cow Leasing Agreements
  • Grazing Agreements
  • Partnership Agreements
  • Share Farming Agreements
  • Succession Planning and Farm Inheritance
  • Wills and inheritance
  • Wind Farm Development Agreements
  • Farm Transfers
  • Basic Payment Entitlements Scheme
  • Dispute Resolution
  • Employment Issues
  • Prosecutions by the Health & Safety Executive and Environment Agency
  • Environmental Issues
  • Voluntary Transfers
  • Renewable Energy Projects
  • Farm and Agricultural Land Sales and Purchases
  • Commercial Mortgages
  • Rights of Way Issues
  • Boundary Disputes
  • Divorce and Separation Agreements and Court Proceedings

Succession planning and farm transfers

We have assisted many farming families with the transfer of the farm and business to the next generation. Farming is a business and we have a strong understanding of farming and the farming way of life in Ireland.  Planning for the transfer of a farm in one’s lifetime or as part of a succession plan is one of our specialist areas. For anyone who is self-employed, retirement is a lengthy process requiring complex decisions concerning work, ownership and management of the business.  The movement from one generation to the next is one of the most problematic phases in any business operation especially those that are family owned and run.  Farming is one such business in which the farm is five times more likely than any other family business to be passed from generation to generation.

We know that any legal decision you make can have consequences for your farm. We understand farming and know what needs to be considered before making legal decisions.  Transferring the family farm is so much more than just a simple business transaction.We understand that when making any decisions with your farm it is important to consider the implications these may have on your business to include tax implications and compliance with EU Schemes and Regulations and the Department of Agriculture. At the same time, farming is unique as it is far more that a business to most who are involved in it. Farms are passed down through generation and families work hard all their lives building up their farm to provide for their families.

Another important consideration for farmers is the fact that a person’s income and assets are subject to a detailed examination to decide on the level of contribution which they must make towards nursing home costs.  For farmers, there is a five-year “look back” rule and assets including the farm which they have transferred in the five-year period before entering in to a nursing home are included in the calculations. The only “safe” transfers are those where a clear five year period has elapsed between the time of the transfer and the first application for State support. This is a relatively new consideration for farmers when deciding whether to transfer land in their lifetime.

People are healthier and living longer now. Retirement brings big changes and lifestyle and income levels need to be planned for. It can be difficult to plan for the future. The advantages to doing so are obvious but one needs to be aware of the potential pitfalls and the consequences of decisions both from a tax and legal perspective..

 

We specialise in farming and agricultural law. We support farmers and landowners. Contact us today. We are here to help.

For more information see below