The UK200Group of independent chartered accountants and lawyers has announced closer ties with the British Institute of Agricultural Consultants (BIAC).
BIAC is a membership organisation of professionals engaged in the giving of advice in all matters concerning the ownership and occupation of land and rural businesses.
It provides workshops, seminars, visits and meetings for those involved in providing advice to the ARA sector and allows visitors in the sector to search for consultants who can help them with particular problems.
The UK200Agriculture Group, made up of members who specialise in supporting farming and rural businesses, will link-up with BIAC on a regular basis to share ideas and expertise on working with the sector.
The Agriculture Group held a pilot workshop with BIAC members in York this month, and are looking to develop the link-up with regular meetings and joined-up working in other regions of the UK.
Topics covered in the meeting included the very topical area of Inheritance Tax and Succession planning which, given increases in land values and higher levels of capital employed, is more critical than ever for farming businesses.
Discussions where also held on how to minimise capital gains tax liabilities by way of securing Entrepreneurs Relief when land is sold. The group discussed effective business structures and procedures needed to achieve these quite often large tax savings.
BIAC members were very keen to raise the matter of land valuations and landlord/tenant relationships.
John Thame, Partner in Ellacotts LLP and chairman of the UK200Agriculture Group, said: “The Agriculture Group is delighted to announce this link-up with BIAC.
“This strategic working partnership is a win-win for both groups, as we will be able to share ideas and expertise which we can take back to our individual clients, enabling their businesses to succeed and flourish.
“The UK200Group and BIAC share many principles including requiring member firms to maintain and enhance their professional standards, codes of conduct and conforming to independent reviews ensures that standards set are being met.
“By working together we hope to enhance our provision of high quality services to the rural environment and food sectors.”
Richard Cooksley, secretary of BIAC said: “We are delighted to establish closer links with the UK200Group.
“We hope the mutual dovetailing of our expertise will benefit both organisations and the farming clients we serve.
“We look forward to further co-operation in the future, where we can share ideas and best practice.”