7 CFR § 900.82 - Stipulation procedures.
The Administrator, or the Administrator's representative, may, at any time before the issuance of a complaint seeking a civil penalty under the Act, enter into a stipulation with any handler or importer in accordance with the following procedures:
(a) The Administrator, or the Administrator's representative, shall give the handler or importer notice of the alleged violation of the applicable marketing order or marketing agreement, or the requirements issued pursuant to 7 U.S.C. 608b(b) and 7 U.S.C. 608e, and an opportunity for a hearing thereon as provided by the Act;
(d) In cases where the handler or importer does not pay the specified civil penalty within the designated time, or the handler or importer does not agree to the stipulation, the Administrator may issue an administrative complaint; and
(e) The civil penalty that the Administrator may have proposed in a stipulation agreement shall have no bearing on the civil penalty amount that the Department may seek in a formal administrative proceeding against the same handler or importer for the same alleged violation.