Complete your SAF 2016 online

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DARD advises farmers to start early and use the online service to submit SAF 2016 applications.

The 2016 Online Single Application Form (SAF) and maps service is now available - https://www.dardni.gov.uk/services/dard-online-services.

DARD's new online map system will allow you to make changes to field boundaries as part of your online application

DARD's new online map system will allow you to make changes to field boundaries as part of your online application

Submitting applications online is the quickest, easiest, most secure and convenient method of making your 2016 single application. If 70% or more claims are made online DARD will be able to consider advance payments in 2017.

If you have never registered with DARD online services before please call the SAF Advisory team on 03002007848 and one of our advisors will help you to get registered to enable you to take advantage of the online system. All of your claim data and maps are online now so why not go ahead and make your claim.

For applicants who applied online last year DARD will not be issuing paper SAF’s this year. For those applicants who applied on paper in 2015 DARD will be issuing paper SAF packs in late March. All applications must be received by 16 May 2016

Our message this year is clear. Start early, do it online, finish on time.

DARD's online Single Application service will detect errors as you complete your application.

DARD's online Single Application service will detect errors as you complete your application.

Start early

Take the time to get it right, it’s your business, your information and it’s in your interest to do so. As well as your SAF, you may need to submit additional forms or evidence as part of the application process. If supporting evidence is not received within the application deadlines, your application (or the part to which the supporting evidence would relate) may be rejected. Check the guidance and make sure you are clear about what you need to do.

New farm business

If you are a new farm business, you need to be registered with DARD as a fully separate and independent business before your SAF can be processed. To register, you need to submit an FB1 application. As this registration process can take time, you are advised to do so without delay. We must have received your FB1 application by 16 May 2016. And remember new business IDs are allocated on the condition that they will remain a fully separate and independent business.

Once you complete and submit your Online Single Application you will receive an electronic receipt and also the ability to print a summary of your application for your records

Once you complete and submit your Online Single Application you will receive an electronic receipt and also the ability to print a summary of your application for your records

Existing farm business

If you are an existing farm business, it is important that you remain separate from other businesses. If management is shared, it is possible to have more than one herd/flock (if applicable) within the one business ID and divide any payments from DARD among the members of the business as they decide.

Young Farmers’ Payment/Regional Reserve

The Young Farmers’ Payment/Regional Reserve opened to applications on 01 March 2016. All applications to Young Farmers’ Payment and/or Regional Reserve will be subject to close scrutiny for scheme eligibility and separateness and if found not to meet these requirements the application may be rejected. Remember, you must apply for the Young Farmers’ Payment and/or Regional Reserve on your SAF and if you are a new or previously unsuccessful applicant you must take your YFP/RR Form and supporting evidence to a DARD Direct Office, by 15 April, yourself.

Know your field data. Declare the land you farm.

For the Basic Payment Scheme, you can only claim on land where the agricultural activity being carried out is under your control. You may be asked to provide evidence that this is the case. Only one applicant can activate entitlements on each field. Make sure that you meet the eligibility criteria to apply and avoid duplicate field penalties. If you don’t farm it, don’t claim it!

Do it online - new features and benefits

Completing your Single Application online in 2016 will be quick, easy, secure and convenient. We have listened to your feedback and enhanced the 2016 online service. The new online features include error alerts, the ability to view your map and make changes to your map within your online SAF, which in turn automatically updates your field data tables.

Doing it online has many benefits for you the farmer, which include;

* greater accuracy

* reducing the possibility of penalties

* updated map details with ability to make changes

* no need to complete a paper LPIS Correction form in most cases

* quick and easy to use and you will receive an instant receipt and summary of your claim.

It is important that you check if your map has been revised for 2016 and use the latest version. Paper maps will not be routinely issued in 2016 and will not be available to hand out at DARD Direct offices. However, if you make your application online you will be able to access and make changes to your map as part of the application process. Changes made to maps through the online system can be actioned faster than changes made on a paper form and, of course, no need for a LPIS Correction form in most cases.

This year if you have an Ecological Focus Area (EFA) requirement DARD will be providing new functionality so you can declare your EFA features online, making this process a lot easier than before. This will become available from early April and we will provide further information and training prior to this. DARD have written to those who had an EFA requirement in 2015 and details will be provided on DARD’s website and in the farming press in due course.

Advice and assistance

For 2016 DARD will be providing a new SAF Advisory service which will deal with all enquiries relating to the 2016 Single Application process. You can access your map in a number of ways. The simplest way is to go online and view, amend or print your map. If you require a paper map you can get one in two ways – either by emailing HYPERLINK “mailto:areabasedschemes@dardni.gov.uk” areabasedschemes@dardni.gov.uk or calling our SAF Advisory team on 0300 200 7848. This service will be available from early March 2016. If you need a paper map, you are advised to request it as soon as possible to ensure that you receive it in time to complete your SAF before the deadline of 16 May 2016.

All of the most up-to-date guidance including the Guide to the Basic Payment Scheme 2016, Guide to Greening Payment 2016 and the Young Farmer’s Payment & Regional Reserve Guidance 2016, can be found now on the DARD website at https://www.dardni.gov.uk/articles/area-based-schemes-2016-information-and-guidance.

Finish on time – it’s your business

You are strongly advised to submit your SAF early this year. Remember, check if your map has changed, check your land eligibility and your scheme eligibility as early as possible.

Check early if you need to submit additional forms and evidence as these can take time to sort out. If you submit your claim online you will be able to make changes up until the closing date without penalty.

The closing date for receipt of single applications and any required supporting evidence is 16 May 2016.

Applications received between 17 May and 10 June will be subject to penalties except in cases of force majeure or exceptional circumstances.

No applications or supporting evidence will be accepted after 10 June.