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FmHA Eases Paper Work for Delinquent Loans

Associated Press

The Farmers Home Administration said Friday that it is easing some of the paper work requirements for delinquent borrowers but insisted that the 45-day deadline for submitting forms to the agency is fixed by law.

A growing number of members of Congress have been pressuring the Agriculture Department agency to extend the deadline, which gives farmers 45 days in which to respond after receiving official notices telling them to begin settling overdue accounts.

The notices were sent out last month to more than 80,000 delinquent borrowers who owe FmHA more than $8 billion.

“There’s just no way legally we can stretch it (the deadline),” said acting agency Administrator La Verne Ausman. “We must hear from the farmer within that time.”

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Several basic “response” forms must be completed and returned within 45 days as the minimum requirement.

Ausman said FmHA county offices will accept supporting documents for the applications after the 45-day deadline, but that must be worked out with those offices.

The notices were sent out to FmHA borrowers who were at least 180 days delinquent in repaying their loans.


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