7 CFR 792.10 - Late payment interest, penalty and administrative charges.
(a) Late payment interest provisions of this section shall not apply:
(1) To debts owed by Federal agencies and State and local governments. Interest on debts owed by such entities shall be charged to the extent authorized under the common law or applicable statutory authority.
(2) If an applicable statute, regulation, agreement, or contract either prohibits the charging of such interest or specifies the interest or charges applicable to the debt involved;
(3) If the late payment interest is waived by FSA in accordance with § 792.11.
(b) FSA will assess late payment interest on the full amount of delinquent debts. For purposes of this section, the term “full amount of the delinquent debt” means the sum of the principal, accrued program interest, and any other charges which are otherwise due and owing to FSA on the delinquent debt at the time the late payment interest is assessed, except as provided in paragraphs (a)(2) and (d)(3) of this section.
(c) The late payment interest shall be expressed as an annual rate of interest which FSA charges on delinquent debts. The late payment interest rate shall be equal to the higher of the Treasury Department's current value of funds rate or the rate of interest assessed under the Prompt Payment Act, determined as of the date specified in paragraphs (d)(1) and (d)(2) of this section. The rate of interest assessed under the Prompt Payment Act was chosen as an alternative rate to ensure that the Government would recoup interest at a rate which was at least as high as that which it pays for late payments.
(1) When a debt results from a statute, regulation, contract, or other agreement with specific provisions for late payment interest and payment due date, late payment interest shall accrue on the amount of the debt from the first day the debt became delinquent, unless otherwise provided by statute.
(2) With respect to debts not resulting from a statute, regulation, contract, or agreement containing specific provisions for late payment interest and payment due date, late payment interest shall begin to accrue from the date on which notice of the debt, including notice of late payment interest, is first mailed or hand-delivered to the debtor.
(3) The rate of late payment interest initially assessed will be fixed for the duration of the indebtedness, except when a debtor has defaulted on a repayment agreement and seeks to enter into a new agreement. FSA may then set a new rate of interest which reflects the late payment interest rate in effect at the time the new agreement is executed. All charges which accrued, but which were not collected under the defaulted agreement, shall be added to the principal to be paid under a new repayment agreement.
(4) The late payment interest on delinquent debts will accrue on a daily basis.
(e) Except as specified in paragraph (a)(2) of this section, a penalty charge of three (3) percent per annum will be assessed on any portion of a debt which remains unpaid ninety (90) days after the date described in paragraph (d)(1) or (d)(2) of this section, if no repayment schedule satisfactory to FSA has been agreed upon. Such penalty charge will be assessed retroactively from the date late payment interest began to accrue and applied on a daily basis. Such rate shall continue to accrue until the delinquent debt has been paid.
(f) FSA shall assess as administrative charges the additional costs of processing delinquent debts against the debtor, to the extent such costs are attributable to the delinquency. Such costs include, but are not limited to, costs incurred in obtaining a credit report, costs of employing commercial firms to locate debtor, costs of employing contractors for collection services, costs of selling collateral or property to satisfy the debt.
(g) When a debt is paid in partial or installment payments, payments will be applied first to administrative charges, second to the penalty charge assessed in accordance with paragraph (e) of this section and late payment interest, and third to outstanding principal.