“Preliminary checks on single applications are to be carried out shortly,” according to the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) in Northern Ireland.

DAERA is first giving applicants “the opportunity to amend any mistakes on the application, without any financial penalty”.

A DAERA spokesperson said: “Farmers will start to receive notices by post, from June 9. Responses must be returned to DAERA no later than June 19, 2017. If the applicant fails to respond to the notice, he or she risks a financial penalty or delayed payment.”

Applicants will be notified where DAERA has identified any of the following errors during the preliminary checks process:

  • Claimed for a field, not recognised on the department’s Land Parcel Identification System (LPIS);
  • Claimed an area greater than the Maximum Eligible Area (MEA) in a given field/fields;
  • Claimed a field which is also being claimed by another business (duplicate field);
  • Not recorded a land usage code on a named field;
  • Completed field data sheet(s) but have not indicated they wish to apply for Basic and Greening payments;
  • Completed field data sheet(s) but have not indicated they wish to apply for payment under the Areas of Natural Constraint Scheme (ANC).

The department added that it is important to know that, as well as preliminary checks, other administrative cross-checks may apply, as well as any on-the-spot checks. These checks are carried out prior to any payment being issued.

Further information is available in the guide to the Basic Payment Scheme on DAERA’s website.

Who do Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) checks apply to?

Checks can only be applied to those who submit an application online.

As it aims to have 100% of applications submitted online by 2018, the department says that this will have benefits for the farmer and will increase the efficiency with which applications can be processed.

The target of 100% of applications submitted online by 2018 is an EU regulatory requirement.