28. Transfer of entitlements
Who can transfer entitlements?
If you own Basic Payment Scheme entitlements, you will be eligible to transfer them with effect from the 2016 scheme year. This includes entitlements awarded to you when the scheme began in 2015, and those you may have since purchased or inherited. You can transfer entitlements with or without land, subject to the conditions laid down in section 28. You can sell your entitlements, or lease them for a specific period, after which at the end of the lease they will be returned to you.
The person or business that takes over your entitlements must meet the definition of a 'farmer' as determined by the European Regulations at the time of transfer. The definition is 'a natural or legal person (or a group of natural or legal persons) whose holding (production units) are situated within Scotland, and who exercises an agricultural activity'.
An agricultural activity can include the production, rearing or growing of agricultural products. This includes harvesting, milking, breeding animals and keeping animals for farming purposes, or maintaining land in a Good Agricultural and Environmental Condition.
If the buyer or lessee does not meet this definition the request to transfer will be rejected.
A key part of the 'farmer' definition is the requirement to have an agricultural holding or production units. The minimum size of a holding is 0.3 hectares. However, to receive payment under the Basic Payment Scheme you must declare a minimum of three hectares of eligible land.
Payment entitlements are calculated to two decimal places. This means you can transfer fractions of payment entitlements that are no smaller than 0.01 hectares.