Types of Cases

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Types of Cases

Agricultural Mediation Program Case Studies and
Types of Cases Handled

Agricultural Mediation Program Case Studies and Types of Cases Handled

Case Summary 1

Dispute: Case involving a property owner and non-payment of a USDA Rural Development Loan

Revelation: It was revealed only during mediation that the property owner had recently lost their job; they were awaiting unemployment/other public assistance. The property owner had applied for a moratorium with the USDA – Rural Development, but the application was turned down.

Resolution: When all the circumstances were revealed, the property owner agreed to provide copies of their applications for assistance as the USDA representative facilitated redetermination. While awaiting that redetermination, the property owner was awarded benefits and was enabled to resume loan payments.

Case Summary 2

Dispute: Case involving a producer receiving an adverse determination letter regarding a Preliminary Wetland Compliance Determination

Revelation: It was discovered that the determination affected land was previously in production but, because of changing conditions, the land was then determined to be a wetland.

Resolution: An agreement was reached that the producer would work with the local district conservationist to create a non-agriculture plan that would bring the farm into compliance. The producer reflected after mediation that there was a general lack of trust beforehand; working with the Michigan Agricultural Mediation Program (MAMP) allowed both parties to communicate openly and overcome roadblocks in moving forward.

Case Summary 3

Dispute: Case involving a producer assessed liquidation damages related to the termination of a Conservation Reserve Program contract

Revelation: The USDA representative heard that erroneous filing information and timelines were provided to the producer by a local representative. The USDA representative reviewed the actual timeline of events to then determine that the producer was acting in good faith.

Resolution: An agreement was reached that an agency representative would go before the county committee in support of the producer. The representative would also recommend to the state office that the county committee’s recommendation be approved outright.

Mediation is available when issues arise involving:

Agricultural loans
Agricultural credit
Wetland determinations
Compliance with farm programs, including conservation programs
Crop insurance
Rural development loans
Organic certification
Family farm transitions
Farmer-neighbor disputes
Other agriculture-related topics deemed appropriate by USDA or the state department of agriculture