Marriage split fears holding back farm handovers to next generation
The risk of a successor’s marriage breaking down is one of the biggest factors preventing dairy farmers from handing on land to the next generation, according to new research.
“For dairy farmers marital breakdown of a successor is a serious concern - they are worried that if a divorce were to take place that it would split the farm,” Teagasc researcher Brian Leonard told the Farming Independent.
“Many said that they might hold off on transferring the farm to a successor and see how the marriage goes and keep the farm in their name for a while.
“I didn’t bring up the topic of marital breakdown with the farmers, so I was surprised that it was brought up. I think more dairy farmers spoke about it because their assets are higher or maybe they might have heard of more experiences of marital breakdown in their area,” said Mr Leonard.
Mr Leonard interviewed 12 beef farmers in the west and 12 dairy farmers in the south of the country to discuss the perception of financial risks surrounding succession and inheritance.
Concerns differed between the two groups and a majority of dairy farmers said potential marital breakdown of their successor was one of their biggest concerns.
The cost of long-term nursing home care was a concern for dairy farmers who were worried that it would cost them over €1,000 a week.
Tax issues were a major worry for western farmers when transferring land.