The Head of the agriculture department at Lodders Solicitors is to play a part in deciding appeals on Rural Payments Agency decisions in a new role.
David Lodder, a partner at Lodders which has offices in Stratford-upon-Avon, Henley-in-Arden and Cheltenham, specialises in advising farming businesses and landowners, and also owns a 150-acre pasture farm in Warwickshire.
He is one of only three practising lawyers to join the Independent Agricultural Appeals Panel (IAAP) out of the 36 new recruits. The panel appointment is for a three-year period until October 2017.
Mr Lodder has long been involved in the agricultural sector and he regularly lectures on agricultural topics, is a member of the National Farmers' Union and the Agricultural Law Association.
He is also the former chairman of the Warwickshire branch of the Game & Wildlife Trust and has been Under Sheriff of Warwickshire since 2004.
The IAAP is an advisory, non-departmental public body of Defra and advises ministers on the merits of decisions taken by the RPA in relation to payments under a wide range of schemes in the EU's common agricultural policy (CAP).
Mr Lodder said: "CAP rules are changing from the 1 January 2015, and a rise in the number of appeals is predicted in the wake of these.
"The panel has been bolstered to assist with hearing these appeals and supporting the RPA and Defra with their decisions.
"Being appointed to the panel presents me with a great opportunity to get under the skin of the nitty gritty issues of the farming industry."