Everything rural businesses need to know about the Basic Payment Scheme (BPS) in 2017.
20 December - BPS 2017 payments update
More than 71,000 farmers have now received their BPS 2017 payments.
Payments have been made to just under 84% of eligible claimants, worth some £1.3bn in total so far. More BPS payments will be released in the next few days and during next week.
7 December - Commons eligibility checks
These are checks on the eligibility of land cover on common land. For more information about these checks please see commons eligibility checks.
15 November - ‘An update on the Basic Payment scheme’ is published
2017 payments: payments for BPS 2017 will start on 1 December. To find out more, readwhich explains:
why some claims may not be paid in December
important updates about greening
cross compliance update
preparing for BPS 2018
15 November - Greening Administrative Penalties
These are additional penalties that will be applied to the greening part of Basic Payment Scheme payments from 2017 onwards. For more information about these penalties please see greening administrative penalties.
How BPS 2017 payments are calculated
To find out how payments are calculated, read the ‘Payments, Reductions and Penalties’ section of the Basic Payment Scheme: rules for 2017. Page 89 explains how RPA calculates payments.
You may also need to read information about greening administrative penalties that apply from BPS 2017.
The BPS 2017 exchange rate is: €1 = £0.89470.
Entitlement values for 2017
|Payment region||Entitlement value|
|Non-SDA (Severely Disadvantaged area)||€180.46|
Greening payment rates for 2017
|Payment region||Greening payment rate|
|Non-SDA (Severely Disadvantaged area)||€77.69|
Payment queries from previous years
If you have a query about a BPS payment that you’ve received, please fill in a BPS payment query form and send it to RPA.
Commons eligibility checks
RPA regularly checks and updates its digital maps. This includes common land. Land cover eligibility on common land is checked using the latest enhanced satellite images and a limited number of supplementary physical land checks. These checks are different from RPA’s usual land eligibility checks. The main differences are:
RPA is checking the eligibility of the land cover on commons and not land boundaries
RPA is surveying the eligible area of a common separately to the enclosed land farmed by the common land graziers who declared grazing rights on the common for BPS
Graziers claim for a common by declaring their grazing rights rather than applying directly for an area of land. This means that there will be no penalties for over-declaring if RPA discovers the eligible area is less than previously used
When and where to check for changes
RPA needs to make sure that all land data on their systems is no more than 3 years old. These checks are carried out on an ongoing basis. This means each common will not be checked every year.
After a common is checked, if the eligible area has changed, RPA will write to those customers who declare rights on it. RPA will publish the new eligible area on GOV.UK.
The changes might affect the value of customers’ BPS 2017 and agri-environment and woodland claims and payments.
This is because the ‘notional area’ used to calculate a customer’s 2017 BPS payment may be less than last year. Therefore, their 2017 BPS payment may be lower than they are expecting. Read more information about how the ‘notional area’ of the common is calculated on page 28 of the.
What to do if you do not agree with the updates
Customers who want to query the revised eligible area need to discuss their query with the other commoners, and relevant Commons Association or equivalent organisation, to reach an agreed view.
It is important that individual customers do not make any changes to the land cover on the common, such as removing scrub, without discussing it with the other graziers/commoners. This is because it might affect the scheme agreements in place with other commoners.
Once customers have reviewed and discussed the findings with the other commoners, if they still want to query or disagree with RPA’s findings, they can call RPA on 03000 200 301.
RPA will focus on making payments using the updated eligible areas and then will review any queries received. This is to avoid delays in making payments.
How the value of the common land part of the BPS payment is calculated.
The common has:
an eligible area of 300ha; and
grazing rights being claimed under BPS for 200 sheep and 70 cattle.
RPA must calculate the livestock unit (LU) value of all the rights being claimed for the common:
Each sheep is equivalent to 0.15 LU, so the calculation for the sheep grazing rights being claimed is: 200 sheep x 0.15 LU = 30 LU
Each adult cow is 1 LU, so the calculation for the cattle grazing rights being claimed is: 70 cattle x 1 LU = 70 LU
The total LU being claimed for the common is therefore: 30 LU + 70 LU = 100 LU
The area to be allocated for each LU claimed for the common is calculated as: 300ha / 100 LU = 3.0ha/LU
If the farmer declared 40 LU of rights to activate entitlements on their BPS 2017 application they would be allocated 3.0ha/LU x 40 LU = 120ha of the total eligible area of the common.
This area will be used to activate entitlements in the same way as any other land declared by the farmer on their application. The examples shown above under ‘Main BPS payment’ and ‘Average entitlement value’ show how this is done.
The above examples are based on a single common and do not take account of any split rights.
Rural Payments service
You can use the Rural Payments service to:
- Register for rural payments
- View your BPS 2017 application summary
- Update your personal and business details
- Give someone else (like an agent) permission to act on your behalf
- View your BPS entitlements
- See and print digital maps of your land parcels
Now the 2017 application period is over, you cannot use the service to:
edit land use
add or delete common rights
make an active farmer declaration for BPS 2017
RPA will let you know when you can do this for BPS 2018.
From 15 May, it was not possible to:
transfer entitlements to use in the BPS 2017 scheme year – either online or using an RLE1 form
transfer land using the Rural Payment service (You can use an RLE1 form for land changes during the BPS 2017 scheme year, as long as the land was at your disposal on 15 May)
RPA will let you know when you can do this for BPS 2018 using the Rural Payments service, so you don’t need to send an RLE1 form.
How to use the Rural Payments service – help is available
There’s help onscreen in the service to guide you if you get stuck (you can also)
Updates to digital maps on the Rural Payments service
The Rural Payments Agency (RPA) is making a number of updates to digital maps, this started in August 2017 and will continue through into autumn 2017. For more information on these updates please see the RLE1 page.
To view your individual land parcels, go to: www.ruralpayments.service.gov.uk/. From the ‘Business overview’ screen, click ‘Land’ then ‘View land’.
We will use these land updates to calculate BPS 2017 payments.
Planned maintenance of the Rural Payments service
There will be times when the Rural Payments service is unavailable because of essential planned maintenance and updates.
Check ‘Rural Payments: registering and updating your details’ to keep updated about availability of the Rural Payments service.
Forgotten your online password?
If you’re logging in with a Customer Reference Number (CRN) and have forgotten your password, you can create a new one from the sign-in page.
Click ‘Having trouble signing in?’ then ‘create a new one’.
If you can’t remember your CRN, call RPA on 03000 200 301.
Scheme rules and other guidance
- find out how the scheme works
Other guidance and forms you may need
- Active farmer certificate - 2017.
- Active farmer readmission: accountant certificate - 2017
- Rural Payments: land use codes
- The guide to cross compliance in England 2017
- (including applications for entitlements) and
Read the RLE1 form and guidance if you need to use an RLE1 form to change your online maps, or to transfer entitlements by paper.
Guidance to help you apply
- gives extra information about claiming online
- gives extra information about applying on paper
- leaflet gives paper customers information to help apply online
- to help you make your application
Helpline 03000 200 301