USDA Hispanic and Women Farmers and Ranchers Claims Process

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IMPORTANT NOTES
:    The claims process closed on May 1, 2013.

Questions about the claims process should be directed to 1-888-508-4429.


Quick Links
:

Legal Assistance Network Listing


Introductioncontentphoto_usda-claims1

Welcome to the National Agricultural Law Center at the University of Arkansas (NALC), the nation’s leading source of agricultural and food law research and information.  Located in Fayetteville, Arkansas, the NALC is a unit of the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture, serving the nation’s vast agricultural community of producers, extension personnel, state and federal policymakers, attorneys, students, academics, and others.  The NALC is a key partner of the USDA National Agricultural Library (NAL), helping fulfill the USDA NAL mission of “advancing access to global information for agriculture.”

To learn more about the NALC, visit our home page at www.nationalaglawcenter.org.  Also, we hope that you “like” us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/nataglaw and “follow” us on twitter at @nataglaw.  For communications regarding NALC’s activities, sign up  here.


Overview

The purpose of this webpage is to provide a central clearinghouse of research and information related to the USDA Hispanic and Women Farmers and Ranchers Claims Process (Claims Process).  This page is designed to serve as the single resource in which anyone involved in or otherwise interested in the Claims Process can access relevant information about the Claims Process.  Please note that this webpage is not the official site for the Claims Process.  The official site for the HWFRCP is www.farmerclaims.gov.  Questions regarding the administration of the HWFRCP should be directed through the contact information provided at www.farmersclaims.gov.  In addition, questions regarding the administration of the HWFRCP should be directed to 1-888-508-4429.

The United States Government is establishing a Claims Process to make available up to $1.33 billion or more to farmers who alleged discrimination by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) based on being female, or based on being Hispanic, in making or servicing farm loans during certain periods between 1981 and 2000.  Qualified claimants who submit a timely claim could receive an award of up to $50,000 or up to $250,000 in cash, depending on the submitted evidence. In addition, USDA will provide a total of up to $160 million in debt relief to successful claimants who currently owe USDA money for eligible farm loans.  Further, successful claimants may receive an additional amount, equal to 25% of the combined cash award plus the principal amount of debt relief, to help pay federal taxes that may be owed.  The Claims Process filing deadline was May 1, 2013.


Disclaimer

The National Agricultural Law Center (NALC) is providing the information associated with this webpage to the interested public solely in accordance with its mission as the nation’s leading source of agricultural and food law research and information.  The National Agricultural Law Center does not provide legal advice at any time or under any circumstances, specifically including any aspect of the HWFRCP. 

Any information provided on, by, or from the Center’s website, including this specific webpage, is not intended to be legal advice, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal services from a licensed professional. 

The resources or the provision thereof on this site are provided solely for educational and informational purposes in accordance with the Center’s research and information mission.   Further, the provision of this webpage by the NALC and the content contained on or from it does not serve as any type of express or implied recommendation about any aspect of the Claims Process, including but not limited to whether any particular individual should request a Claims Package or otherwise participate in the Claims Process in any capacity.


Claims Process Packagecontentphoto_usda-claims2

This website is not the official website for the USDA Hispanic and Women Farmers and Ranchers Claims Process.  The official website for the Claims Process is www.farmerclaims.gov, which is provided by the Claims Administrator Epiq Systems.  Instructions for requesting  the Claims Package are available at www.farmerclaims.gov.   Please note that this link will take you away from this webpage and to the official website for the Claims Process.  For any questions regarding a request for a Claims Package, contact the Claims Administrator at 1-888-508-4429.


Legal Assistance Network

Farmers Legal Action Group, Inc. (FLAG) and the National Agricultural Law Center (NALC) are assisting in the development of a network of attorneys to assist claimants in the completion of the official HWFRCP Claim Form.  The legal assistance network will be publicly available on this webpage so claimants and others can easily access the information.

Please note, however, that a claimant is not required to be assisted by an attorney in order to complete and submit the official USDA HWFRCP claim form.  In addition, the attorney need not be listed in the assistance network to assist a claimant.

Legal Assistance Network Listing – This document provides a listing of attorneys who are included in the Legal Assistance Network.  Attorneys listed in this document have indicated that they have viewed the Attorney Training Video provided by Farmers’ Legal Action Group, Inc. (FLAG) and that they are interested in working with claimants in the completion of the official Claim Form.  This information will continue to be updated on an ongoing basis, so please continue to check this document for updates.  Any questions regarding the Legal Assistance Network can be sent to nataglaw@uark.edu.


Updates

This page will be updated on an ongoing basis as necessary, so please check back regularly.  As updates are made, notices will be posted on this webpage as well as on the National Agricultural Law Center Facebook page www.facebook.com/nataglaw.  In addition, notices will be announced through the National Agricultural Law Center twitter account at @nataglaw and will always include the “hashtag” #farmerclaims.


Research and Information

USDA Promotional Materials

The information provided within this section was produced by the USDA for the purpose of publicizing and promoting the Claims Process.  This information may be freely downloaded and designed to be distributed by the public and/or any other person or entity associated with the Claims Process.

Flyer

PowerPoint Presentation

Postcard

Poster

Summary Notice


Informational Materialscontentphoto_usda-claims3

The informational materials provided in this section are designed to provide educational assistance to attorneys, legal service providers, and others throughout the United States who would be willing to work with potential claimants in completing and submitting the Claims Process Package.  NALC does not warranty or otherwise guarantee the content of the informational materials and is providing all informational materials solely in furtherance of its national research and information mission.

Framework for Hispanic or Female Farmers’ Claims Process – This document is designed to provide guidance regarding aspects of the Claims Process, including a description of the purpose of the HWFRCP, summary of the cash payments and other relief made available under the Claims Process, an explanation of the roles of the Claims Administrator and the Claims Adjudicator, required Claims Process procedures, the decision-making process, claims determinations, fraud prevention, attorneys’ fees, and dual membership issues.

Frequently Asked Questions – Please note that this link will take you to the official HWFRCP website, farmerclaims.gov.

Summary of Claims Process


Additional Resources

The information provided in this section is designed to enhance broader understanding of the Claims Process.  NALC does not warranty or otherwise guarantee the content of the Additional Resources, and is providing the information in this section as a means of enhancing understanding of the Claims Process.  This section will be updated and modified as necessary.

National Agricultural Law Center Reading Rooms – The NALC Reading Rooms are comprehensive, subject-based compilations of electronic agricultural and food law resources. Recommended Reading Rooms:

Administrative Law

Business Organizations

Finance & Credit

The Glossary of Agricultural Production, Programs, and Policy – Provides an extensive compilation of agricultural terms, programs, and policies

Congressional Research Service Reports – This is a free database of agricultural and food law and policy reports published by the Library of Congress. Recommended subjects are:

Federal Loan Programs

Farm Policy and Legislative Analysis

Finance and Credit

 

Ag & Food Law  Blog – A news, research, and information blog resource on agricultural and food law, including information regarding the Claims Process  (indexed under “USDA HWFRCP”)