IT Tralee agricultural science graduates now eligible to apply for stamp duty relief

Agricultural science graduates of the Institute of Technology Tralee (IT Tralee) are now eligible to apply for stamp duty relief.

Revenue said in a recent statement that amendments made to the Stamp Tax and Duty Manual include that the Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Science awarded by the college is now in the list of approved courses.

Section 81AA SDCA 1999 and Section 81D SDCA 1999 of the stamp duty manual have been amended.

Section 81AA  SDCA 1999 – transfers of land to young trained farmers – provides relief from stamp duty on the transfer of an interest in agricultural land to certain farmers who are under 35 years-of-age and who hold a relevant agricultural qualification. 

It applies to deeds transferring land executed on or after April 2, 2007. The latest date on or before which transfers of land must be executed has been extended on a few occasions and is currently December 31, 2021.

Section 81D SDCA 1999 – relief for leases of farmland – provides full relief from stamp duty in respect of certain leases of farmland executed (signed, sealed or both) on or after July 1, 2018. The relief, which is intended to encourage more productive use of farmland, constitutes an EU state aid and must comply with EU state aid rules.

For the purposes of this relief, a farmer is a person who has a relevant agricultural qualification or who spends a specified amount of time farming. The term of the lease must be for a period of at least six years and must not exceed 35 years. The land must be wholly non-residential and used exclusively for farming carried on by the lessee.

In addition, the Tax and Duty Manual on relief for leases of farmland has also been amended to reflect the increased EU state aid limit of €20,000 (previously €15,000) that now applies to this relief.

Stamp Duty reliefs under review by finance department

Earlier this year, AgriLand reported that the Department of Finance would be conducting a review into the stamp duty reliefs for farm and land transactions.

These reliefs, namely the Farm Consolidation relief and the Consanguinity relief, which were both provided for in the Finance Act 2017, are due to cease effect on December 31 of this year (2020).

It is expected that the evaluations of both reliefs will form part of the Minister for Finance, Paschal Donohoe’s, considerations for Budget 2021.

IFA calls for ‘crucial’ renewable of stamp duty reliefs

This month, the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA) Farm Business chairperson Rose Mary McDonagh said the “renewal of various stamp duty reliefs in the October budget is crucial for the development of the sector”.

“Consanguinity and consolidation reliefs under the stamp duty code, along with the young trained farmer relief, are vital to the sustainability and viability of the agricultural sector. They align with one of the nine objectives of the Common Agricultural Policy [CAP] – generational renewal,” she said.

Consanguinity relief refers to land transactions between related persons. Consolidation relief refers to land transactions that consolidate farms over an area.