7 U.S. Code § 1981a - Loan moratorium and policy on foreclosures
(a) In general
In addition to any other authority that the Secretary may have to defer principal and interest and forego foreclosure, the Secretary may permit, at the request of the borrower, the deferral of principal and interest on any outstanding loan made, insured, or held by the Secretary under this chapter, or under the provisions of any other law administered by the Farmers Home Administration or by the Rural Development Administration, and may forego foreclosure of any such loan, for such period as the Secretary deems necessary upon a showing by the borrower that due to circumstances beyond the borrower’s control, the borrower is temporarily unable to continue making payments of such principal and interest when due without unduly impairing the standard of living of the borrower. The Secretary may permit interest that accrues during the deferral period on any loan deferred under this section to bear no interest during or after such period: Provided, That if the security instrument securing such loan is foreclosed such interest as is included in the purchase price at such foreclosure shall become part of the principal and draw interest from the date of foreclosure at the rate prescribed by law.
(1) In general
Subject to the other provisions of this subsection, effective beginning on the date of the enactment of this subsection, there shall be in effect a moratorium, with respect to farmer program loans made under subchapter I, II, or III, on all acceleration and foreclosure proceedings instituted by the Department of Agriculture against any farmer or rancher who—
(A) has pending against the Department a claim of program discrimination that is accepted by the Department as valid; or
(2) Waiver of interest and offsets
During the period of the moratorium, the Secretary shall waive the accrual of interest and offsets on all farmer program loans made under subchapter I, II, or III for which loan acceleration or foreclosure proceedings have been suspended under paragraph (1).
(3) Termination of moratorium
The moratorium shall terminate with respect to a claim of discrimination by a farmer or rancher on the earlier of—
(4) Failure to prevail
If a farmer or rancher does not prevail on a claim of discrimination described in paragraph (1), the farmer or rancher shall be liable for any interest and offsets that accrued during the period that loan acceleration or foreclosure proceedings have been suspended under paragraph (1).
Source(Pub. L. 87–128, title III, § 331A, as added Pub. L. 95–334, title I, § 122,Aug. 4, 1978, 92 Stat. 427; amended Pub. L. 101–624, title XXIII, § 2303(b),Nov. 28, 1990, 104 Stat. 3981; Pub. L. 110–234, title XIV, § 14002(a),May 22, 2008, 122 Stat. 1442; Pub. L. 110–246, § 4(a), title XIV, § 14002(a),June 18, 2008, 122 Stat. 1664, 2204.)
References in Text
For definition of “this chapter”, referred to in subsec. (a), see note set out under section 1921 of this title.
The date of the enactment of this subsection, referred to in subsec. (b)(1), is the date of enactment of Pub. L. 110–246, which was approved June 18, 2008.
Pub. L. 110–234and Pub. L. 110–246made identical amendments to this section. The amendments by Pub. L. 110–234were repealed by section 4(a) ofPub. L. 110–246.
Provisions similar to those in this section were contained in the following appropriation acts:
Pub. L. 99–500, § 101(a) [title II], Oct. 18, 1986, 100 Stat. 1783, 1783–16, and Pub. L. 99–591, § 101(a) [title II], Oct. 30, 1986, 100 Stat. 3341, 3341–16.
Pub. L. 99–190, § 101(a) [H.R. 3037, title II], Dec. 19, 1985, 99 Stat. 1185; Pub. L. 100–202, § 106,Dec. 22, 1987, 101 Stat. 1329–433.
2008—Pub. L. 110–246, § 14002(a), designated existing provisions as subsec. (a) and added subsec. (b).
1990—Pub. L. 101–624inserted “or by the Rural Development Administration” after “Farmers Home Administration”.
Effective Date of 2008 Amendment
Amendment of this section and repeal of Pub. L. 110–234by Pub. L. 110–246effective May 22, 2008, the date of enactment of Pub. L. 110–234, see section 4 ofPub. L. 110–246, set out as an Effective Date note under section 8701 of this title.
Forbearance and Restructuring for Farm Loans
Pub. L. 100–387, title III, § 313(a),Aug. 11, 1988, 102 Stat. 949, provided that: “It is the sense of Congress that the Secretary of Agriculture should, with respect to farmers and ranchers who suffer major losses due to drought, hail, excessive moisture, or related condition in 1988—
“(1) exercise forbearance in the collection of interest and principal on direct farmer program loans under the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act [7 U.S.C. 1921 et seq.] outstanding for such farmers and ranchers;
“(2) expedite the use of credit restructuring and other credit relief mechanisms authorized under the Agricultural Credit Act of 1987 [Pub. L. 100–233, Jan. 6, 1988, 101 Stat. 1568, see Tables for classification] and similar provisions of law for such farmers and ranchers; and
“(3) encourage commercial lenders participating in guaranteed farmer lending programs under the Consolidated Farm and Rural Development Act to exercise forbearance before declaring loans to such farmers and ranchers under such programs in default.”