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Some are eligible for USDA farm loan compensation

If you believe that the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) improperly denied farm loan benefits to you between 1981 and 2000 because you are Hispanic or because you are female, you may be eligible to apply for compensation.

You may be eligible if:

1. You sought a farm loan or farm-loan servicing from USDA during that period; and

2. The loan was denied, provided late, approved for a lesser amount than requested, approved with restrictive conditions, or USDA failed to provide an appropriate loan service; and

3. You believe these actions occurred because you are Hispanic or female.

If you want to register your name to receive a claims package, you can call the Farmer and Rancher Call Center at (888) 508-4429 or access the website, www.farmerclaims.gov.

In 2011, a claims administrator will begin mailing claims packages to those who have requested one through the call center or website. The claims package will have detailed information about the eligibility and claims process.

In order to participate, you must submit a claim to the claims administrator by the end of the claims period.

If you are currently represented by counsel regarding allegations of discrimination against USDA or in a lawsuit claiming discrimination by USDA, you should contact your counsel regarding this claims process.

USDA cannot provide legal advice to you. You are not required to hire an attorney to file a claim, but you may contact a lawyer or other legal services provider in your community for additional guidance.

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