Stamp duty reliefs on farmland cost State €10.8m in 2015

Stamp duty reliefs on farms cost the state some €10.8m in 2015, according to figures from the Revenue Commissioners.

Under Consanguinity relief conveyances and transfers of certain properties between close relatives were subject to stamp duty at one-half of the normal rate.

This relief was due to expire at the end of 2014. However, arising from recommendations of the Agri-taxation Review Finance Act 2014 provides that this relief will continue to be available for another three years, i.e., in relation to the conveyance of land executed on or after 1 January 2015 and before 1 January 2018.

The relief is confined to the conveyance or transfer of land by an individual who is 65 years or under, where the person to whom the land is being conveyed or transferred is a farmer who, from the date the land is conveyed or transferred, spends more than 50% of his or her time farming the land – including the land conveyed or transferred – for a period of not less than 6 years.

In addition, the land must be farmed on a commercial basis and with a view to the realisation of profits.

This relief is designed to encourage farmers who are of retirement age to transfer their land to a son or daughter or other close relative who will be better able to farm the land productively.

The cost of this relief in 2015 was €6.8m

Young Farmer Relief

In Finance Act 2015, Young Trained Farmers relief, which was due to expire on December 31, 2015, was extended for a further three years to 31 December 2018.

Under this relief, stamp duty is not payable where land is conveyed or transferred to the holder of approved qualifications who is under 35 years and who farms the land, for not less than 50% of his or her normal working time, for a period of not less than 5 years from the time the land is conveyed or transferred.

The cost of extending this relief was estimated at €4m per annum.