A gross off-farm income limit of €40,000 was applied to all applicants to the 2018 National Reserve. Applicants could choose to use either the full 2016 or 2017 tax year, whichever was more advantageous to the applicant. Certain Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection payments including, Jobseekers Allowance and Jobseekers Benefit are reckonable as off-farm income.
For those applicants under the National Reserve who are farming as part of a group or as a Company, off farm income is determined as follows:
- Joint herd number - the gross off-farm income of all members of the group is taken into consideration (€40,000 limit applies to the group);
- Company - the gross off-farm income of the Directors is taken into consideration;
- Registered Farm Partnership - off-farm income of all participants on the herd number to which the Young Farmer(s) is associated is considered.
In determining the off farm income of the applicant(s), the complete tax year of 2016 or 2017 is considered and the applicant must provide supporting documentation to cover the entire period i.e. 52 week period.