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e-CFR data is current as of February 24, 2021

Title 7Subtitle BChapter IVPart 400Subpart X → §400.766


Title 7: Agriculture
PART 400—GENERAL ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS
Subpart X—Interpretations of Statutory Provisions, Policy Provisions, and Procedures


§400.766   Basis and applicability.

(a) The regulations contained in this part prescribe the rules and criteria for obtaining a final agency determination or a FCIC interpretation.

(1) FCIC will provide a final agency determination or a FCIC interpretation, as applicable, for statutory, regulatory, or other policy provisions or procedures that were in effect during the four most recent crop years from the crop year in which your request was submitted. For example, for a request received in the 2014 crop year, FCIC will consider requests for the 2014, 2013, 2012, and 2011 crop years.

(2) If FCIC determines a request is outside the scope of crop years authorized in paragraph (a)(1) of this section, you will be notified within 30 days of the date of receipt by FCIC.

(3) If the statutory, regulatory or other policy provisions or procedures have changed for the time period you seek an interpretation you must submit a separate request for each policy provision or procedure by year. For example, if you seek an interpretation of section 6(b) of the Small Grains Crop Provisions for the 2012 through 2015 crop years but the policy provisions were revised starting with the 2014 crop year, you must submit two requests, one for the 2012 and 2013 crop years and another for the 2014 and 2015 crop years.

(b) With respect to a final agency determination or a FCIC interpretation:

(1) If there is a dispute between participants that involves a final agency determination or a FCIC interpretation:

(i) The parties are required to seek an interpretation of the disputed provision from FCIC in accordance with this subpart (This may require that the parties seek a stay of the proceedings until an interpretation is provided, if such proceedings have been initiated); and

(ii) The final agency determination or FCIC interpretation may take the form of a written interpretation or, at the sole discretion of FCIC, may take the form of testimony from an employee of RMA expressly authorized in writing to provide interpretations of policy or procedure on behalf of FCIC.

(2) All written final agency determinations issued by FCIC are binding on all participants in the Federal crop insurance program for the crop years the policy provisions are in effect. All written FCIC interpretations and testimony from an employee of RMA are binding on the parties to the dispute, including the arbitrator, mediator, judge, or NAD.

(3) Failure to request a final agency determination or FCIC interpretation when required by this subpart or failure of NAD, arbitrator, mediator, or judge to adhere to the final agency determination or FCIC interpretation provided under this subpart will result in the nullification of any award or agreement in arbitration or mediation in accordance with the provisions in the “Mediation, Arbitration, Appeal, Reconsideration, and Administrative and Judicial Review” section or similar section in all crop insurance policies.

(4) If either party believes an award or decision was rendered by NAD, arbitrator, mediator, or judge based on a disputed provision in which there was a failure to request a final agency determination or FCIC interpretation or NAD, arbitrator, mediator, or judge's decision was not in accordance with the final agency determination or FCIC interpretation rendered with respect to the disputed provision, the party may request FCIC review the matter to determine if a final agency determination or FCIC interpretation should have been sought in accordance with §400.767.

(i) Requests should be submitted through one of the methods contained in §400.767(a)(1);

(ii) If FCIC determines that a final agency determination or FCIC interpretation should have been sought and it was not, or the decision was not in accordance with the final agency determination or FCIC interpretation rendered with respect to the disputed provision:

(A) The award is automatically nullified; and

(B) Either party may appeal FCIC's determination that a final agency determination or FCIC interpretation should have been sought and it was not, or the decision was not in accordance with the final agency determination or FCIC interpretation rendered with respect to the disputed provision to NAD in accordance with 7 CFR part 11.

(5) All written final agency determinations that are published on RMA's website are considered matters of general applicability and are not appealable to NAD. Before obtaining judicial review of any final agency determination, you must obtain an Administrative Final Determination from the Director of NAD on the issue of whether the final agency determination is a matter of general applicability.

(6) With respect to an administrative review of a FCIC interpretation:

(i) If either party to the proceeding does not agree with the written FCIC interpretation, a request for administrative review may be filed in accordance with 7 CFR part 400, subpart J. If you seek an administrative review from FCIC, such request must be submitted in accordance with §400.767(a).

(ii) FCIC will not accept requests for administrative review from NAD, a mediator, or arbitrator.

(iii) The RMA Office of the Deputy Administrator for Product Management will make a determination on the request for administrative review not later than 30 days after receipt of the request.

(iv) Regardless of whether you have sought administrative review, you may appeal a FCIC interpretation under this subsection to NAD in accordance with 7 CFR part 11.

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