Title 7

SECTION 1412.41

1412.41 ARC or PLC program contract.

§ 1412.41 ARC or PLC program contract.

(a) The following provisions apply to ARC and PLC Program contracts:

(1) Eligible producers (as specified in § 1412.42) of covered commodities with base acres may enroll in ARC and PLC contracts during the enrollment period announced by FSA.

(i) The 2019 contract period ends September 30, 2019. Accordingly, the enrollment for 2019 is the only program year a retroactive contract can be approved. (ii) Except as stated in this section, enrollment is not allowed after September 30 of the fiscal year in which the ARC or PLC payments are requested. FSA will not process offers of enrollment for a contract period after the contract period has ended. This is not a compliance provision but a rule of general applicability and will apply to every offer to contract in each contract year.

(iii) If a 2019 farm did not have a valid election made by producers in accordance with subpart G of this part, no producer on that farm is eligible for any 2019 ARC or PLC payment for that farm. This is not an adverse decision for any enrolled producer on that farm; rather, the farm's producers are simply not eligible for payments on the enrolled farm because the farm's producers failed to make a valid election in 2019.

(2) Except as specified in this section for ARC-CO and PLC enrollments, contracts will not be approved unless all producers sharing in contract acreage with more than a zero share have submitted all applicable signatures on the contract and documentation necessary for FSA to approve the contract.

(i) For ARC-IC contracts there are no exceptions to this provision for signatures and documentation.

(ii) A contract not having all requisite signatures of producers having more than a zero share of contract acreage on or before the enrollment deadline is incomplete and will not be considered by FSA or CCC for any purpose and will not be acted on or approved.

(iii) Contracts enrolled by a producer by the date specified in paragraph (a)(1) of this section that were not signed by other producers as required by this section will be withdrawn and will not be approved.

(iv) An exception to this signature and documentation provision applies to ARC-CO and PLC offers of enrollment. In those instances in which, at the discretion of the Deputy Administrator and where no dispute of shares or other disagreement between producers is evident or suspected, ARC-CO and PLC offers of enrollment can be approved for the covered commodity to permit payment to only those eligible producers who did enroll and without regard to shares that do not have signatures. In this exception, the covered commodity on the farm will be considered enrolled. This exception will be made only if, in the sole judgment and discretion of FSA, FSA is satisfied that those producers who did sign in accordance with this section ensure compliance with all contract provisions and requirements of this part.

(v) Producers have no right to payment on any farm that is not enrolled in ARC or PLC and they are not entitled to a decision to authorize the exception in paragraph (a)(2)(iv) for ARC-CO and PLC enrollments, as that is discretionary. CCC and FSA are not responsible for ensuring that producers annually enroll in ARC or PLC.

(3) An eligible producer's valid share of enrolled base acres on a farm is always limited to the producer's share of reported crop acreage on the farm. For example, if a producer enrolled with a 75 percent share of a farm's 1,000 base acres, the producer's enrollment would only be valid if the producer had 100 percent share interest in 750 or more reported crop acres on that farm. Valid claimed shares of base acres must always be supported by reported crop acres on the farm.

(4) Except for enrollments of ARC-IC, eligible producers who choose to enter into a contract with FSA do so on a covered commodity-by-covered commodity basis. If the decision is made to enroll a covered commodity on a farm, producers having not less than 100 percent of the interest in those covered commodity base acres must enroll all covered commodity base acres of the covered commodity on the farm. Enrollment of fewer than all base acres of the covered commodity by all the producers having a share interest in that covered commodity on the farm is not allowed and such covered commodity will not be considered enrolled unless all producers who share in the base acres complete enrollment by the end of the enrollment period. Producers on a farm are solely responsible for ensuring that enrollment occurs.

(5) Producers who have enrolled according to this section must submit all required documents necessary to determine payment eligibility as specified in §§ 1412.51 and 1412.67.

(b) Any eligible producer of an enrolled covered commodity or ARC-IC contract may withdraw from a contract at any time by the end of the contract period. The withdrawal must be filed in writing and submitted to CCC and FSA by the end of the contract period. If any producer of a covered commodity or ARC-IC contract submits a written request to withdraw, FSA will consider the enrollment of that covered commodity or ARC-IC contract withdrawn.

(c) If the multiyear annual contract option is selected by all of a farm's producers of covered commodity base acres on the farm, the enrollment of any covered commodity on the farm in a year will be presumed by CCC and FSA to be the enrollment for following subsequent crop years unless any of the following, occur:

(1) A change to the farm's constitution;

(2) A change to any of the farm's base acres or PLC yield of any covered commodity;

(3) A change to any of the producers or producer shares of covered commodities on the farm;

(4) A change in either election or enrollment of any covered commodity on the farm; or

(5) Any change, including a withdrawal of any enrolled producer, that FSA determines to require producers on the farm to reaffirm enrollment.

(d) All contracts expire on September 30 of the fiscal year of the contract unless:

(1) Withdrawn in accordance with paragraph (b) of this section;

(2) Terminated in accordance with paragraph (e) or (f) of this section; or

(3) Terminated at an earlier date by mutual consent of all parties, including CCC.

(e) A transfer or change in the interest of an owner or producer in the farm or in acreage on the farm subject to a contract will result in the termination of the contract. The contract termination will be effective on the date of the transfer or change. Successors to the interest in the farm or crops on the farm subject to the contract may enroll the covered commodities on the farm in a new contract for the current year and assume all obligations under the contract.

(f) In the event a 2019 or subsequent crop year farm reconstitution is completed on a properly enrolled farm or farms in accordance with part 718 of this title, FSA will issue notices to the farm operator and owners of record on a farm that all producers with an interest in the base acres on the farm must sign a new ARC or PLC program contract within the later of 30 days of the notice or September 30 of the fiscal year program payments are requested, after receiving written notification by the county committee indicating the reconstitution is completed. It is the responsibility of the operator and owners on a farm that producers with an interest in base acres are notified of the reconstitution and requirement for a new contract.

[84 FR 45890, Sept. 3, 2019]