Farmers whose land has been left waterlogged by recent flooding are being invited to apply for a share of a £10 million support package.
DEFRA launched the Farming Recovery Fund on 28 February to help farmers in flood-stricken areas following the wettest winter since records began.
The fund will cover uninsured losses, rather than items which should ordinarily already be covered by insurance, and will provide assistance in four key areas of recovery:
- Restoring productive grassland;
- Restoring productive arable and horticultural land;
- Restoring farm vehicle access to fields;
- Improvements to agricultural drainage.
Farmers affected by flooding will be able to apply for emergency funding of up to £5,000, covering up to 100 per cent of their business costs, ensuring they can continue to grow crops and graze livestock.
DEFRA says the majority of the funding has been earmarked for farmers whose farms are still flooded, with the upper limit for each application being set once the flood waters recede and the longer-term damage becomes clearer.
At the same time, HM Revenue and Customs has also announced a package of measures, including a helpline, to ensure taxpayers affected by flooding can access fast, practical help and advice on a wide range of tax problems which may arise as a result of their predicament.
The helpline can be contacted on 0800 904 7900 and is open from 8am to 8pm from Monday to Friday and 8am to 4pm on Saturday and Sunday, excluding bank holidays.
HMRC has also agreed to the following measures:
- Instalment arrangements for taxpayers unable to pay because of the floods;
- Taking into consideration situations where individuals and businesses have lost vital records in the floods;
- Suspend debt collection proceedings for people affected by flooding, and
- Cancel penalties for missed statutory deadlines when the delay was caused by the floods.
Additionally, businesses affected by flooding will be able to claim 100 per cent tax relief on business rates for three months, as well as being able to defer their tax payments.
If you have been affected by flooding and require further information on accessing the above funding or have concerns regarding your tax obligations then Milsted Langdon can help. For further information, please contact us.