Farming community forgotten as changes to Fair Deal Scheme stall – Scanlon

Published on: 24 April 2019

Fianna Fáil TD for Sligo-Leitrim Eamon Scanlon has highlighted the government’s failure to bring changes to the Fair Deal scheme which would see supports to farming families who have family in the scheme.

Deputy Scanlon said, “The government made grand announcements that they would amend the Fair Deal legislation to support farm families. These vital changes would have brought in a Bill to cap farm contributions from farm assets at three years, if a family member is continuing to work on the farm.

“Heads of Bill have still not been published despite much anticipation in the farming community. This delay is unacceptable and will mean that farm families across the country are losing out on the benefits of this scheme.

“This has been a bug-bear for farming families for years, and these changes are desperately needed to make the scheme fairer and to ensure that older farmers can access the care they need.

“Farmers spending a considerable amount of time in a nursing home could lose significant portions of their farm due to the 7.5% contribution charge on assets. This is currently applied on a yearly basis with no upper limit in place.

“The government must cap this at three years to support farmers and their families. The farming community is struggling as it is with the beef sector in crisis. All attempts should be made to support them,” concluded Deputy Scanlon. 

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