Information & NFU Funding for farmers

The pace of change in agricultural law is ever-increasing, and the amount of new regulation is greater and more complex than ever. With recent issues arising from Brexit, COVID and COP26 there has never been a greater need than now for farmers to get the best specialist legal advice.

Thrings’ agriculture team has been giving sector-focused legal advice to those in farming for over three hundred years.

On this page you will find information for farmers including helpful guides and videos, details about our specialisms and details of funding of legal fees available to NFU Members. Our free Legal Health Check is specially designed for farms and agricultural businesses to help identify areas where legal advice may be needed.

Our latest blog sets out the main issues identified during a legal health check on your farm.

NFU Legal Health Check

specially designed for farms and agricultural businesses


Duncan Sigournay

Partner 01225 340 064

Mark Charter

Partner 02380 930 314

Russell Reeves

Partner 0117 930 9598

Alex Madden

Partner 0117 930 9575



At Thrings, our Agricultural team supports a vast range of agricultural and diversifying businesses, helping the rural economy to thrive.

We have strong connections in the industry, including the NFU, CLA, TFA and other trade organisations.

We are the NFU’s appointed legal panel firm for seven counties in the South East - Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Oxfordshire, Surrey and West Sussex – and we regularly meet NFU County Advisers, Group Secretaries and NFU members.

Our lawyers speak at legal conferences including BIAC and the Oxford Farming Conference as well as providing legal content for publications such as Farmers Weekly, Farmers Guardian and British Farmer and Grower.

We take a collaborative approach, working closely with our clients, their professional advisors and other members of our specialist agriculture team. As one of the largest agriculture teams in the country, we have experienced expert lawyers to advise you on all matters concerning your farm including property, planning, renewables, diversification, tax and estate planning, agri-business, employment and litigation.

Most importantly of all, we are here to support and advise our farming clients, identifying the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead and enabling them to grow their business for future generations.




NFU discount of our fees
As an NFU Panel Firm we offer NFU Members a 12.5% discount on our fees for qualifying cases and if you subscribe to the NFU’s Legal Assistance Scheme further funding from the NFU may be available.

NFU Contract Checking Service
Seeking early advice before signing on the dotted line can protect you from potentially costly, lengthy and stressful legal disputes in the future. That’s why the NFU in conjunction with Thrings is delighted to offer a Contract Checking Service to NFU Farmer & Grower members. Thrings can undertake the work on your behalf by offering our independent professional advice to ensure you understand your rights and obligations, and are satisfied that your aims and objectives are met before you sign the contract.

When can the service be used?

When you receive a contract from another party you are planning to trade with or buy from

When you wish to issue a new contract yourself for a business transaction you are about to enter into with another party

When either you or the other party propose changes to any of the terms and conditions of an existing contract

How does the NFU contribute?
If you are an NFU member and subscribe to the NFU Legal Assistance Scheme we can on your behalf apply for financial assistance from the NFU up to a maximum of £1,000 towards the costs of having four contracts checked or drafted by Thrings.

Don’t sign contracts without understanding your rights and obligations. The above service could reduce the stress and high legal costs associated with contractual disputes that could be avoided if you seek professional advice before signing the contract.

NFU Legal Health Check
If you want us to carry out a free legal heath check of your farm and business, click the link “Take our Survey” at the top of this page.

The Legal Health Check can significantly help underpin your business’s resilience. During the current unprecedented changing times with the future implementation of the Agricultural Transition Plan, Environmental Land Management Scheme, Lump Sum Payments to name a few, our Legal Health Check could assist in many ways - including, but not limited to, the following areas:

Property matters (includes ownership, tenancies, land registration)

Estate planning (includes Wills, Lasting Powers of Attorney, Trust Deeds etc.)

Business structures

Share farming

Contract farming

Rights of Way (including Section 31(6) applications)

Succession planning



What does the service include?
Once you have completed our survey we will provide you with a simple report with any initial observations and/or recommendations.

How much does it cost?
Our Legal Health Check Service is free and is designed to provide you with a report that highlights any concerns or legal matters that need to be addressed.

If you then wish to take forward any recommendations identified at the report stage we will provide you with a costs estimate (including a 12.5% discount for NFU members) of a fixed fee prior to doing any work.

NFU funding towards issues addressed in the Legal Health Check
If you subscribe to the NFU’s Legal Assistance Scheme, on your behalf we can apply to the NFU for financial assistance of up to a maximum of £1,000 for four sets of instructions (at £250 each) generated by the Legal Health Check.

Take Five Guides

Your guide to biodiversity net gain opportunities in five steps.

Your guide to letting land for allotments in five easy steps

Five quick and easy ways to improve farm sustainability

In this fast-paced world we live in, we seem to have less and less time to absorb information.

At Thrings, in order to make it quicker for you, the client, to get to the right information in a speedy way, we have created our Take Five guides; sound bites of legal content in five steps.

Industry Accreditations

We have strong ties to the following: