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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR data is current as of January 23, 2020

Title 7Subtitle BChapter XLIIPart 4279Subpart C → Subject Group

Title 7: Agriculture
Subpart C—Biorefinery, Renewable Chemical, and Biobased Product Manufacturing Assistance Loans

Conditions of Guarantee

§4279.220   General conditions of guarantee.

A loan guarantee under this part will be evidenced by a Loan Note Guarantee issued by the Agency. Each Lender will execute a Lender's Agreement. If a valid Lender's Agreement already exists, it is not necessary to execute a new Lender's Agreement with each loan guarantee. The provisions of this part and 7 CFR part 4287, subpart D will apply to all outstanding guarantees. In the event of a conflict between the guaranteed loan documents and these regulations as they exist at the time the documents are executed, the regulations will control.

(a) Full faith and credit. (1) A guarantee under this subpart constitutes an obligation supported by the full faith and credit of the United States and is incontestable except for fraud or misrepresentation of which a Lender or Holder has actual knowledge at the time it becomes such Lender or Holder or which a Lender or Holder participates in or condones.

(2) The guarantee will be unenforceable to the extent that any loss is occasioned by:

(i) A provision for Interest on Interest, Default or penalty Interest, or late payment fees;

(ii) The violation of usury laws;

(iii) Use of loan proceeds for unauthorized purposes or to the extent that loan funds are used for purposes other than those specifically approved by the Agency in its Conditional Commitment;

(iv) Failure to obtain or maintain the required security regardless of the time at which the Agency acquires knowledge thereof; and

(v) Negligent Loan Origination or Negligent Loan Servicing unless otherwise determined under paragraph (d) of this section.

(3) The Agency will guarantee payment as follows:

(i) To any Holder, 100 percent of any loss sustained by the Holder on the guaranteed portion of the loan it owns and Interest through the Interest Termination Date due on such portion.

(ii) To the Lender, subject to the provisions of this part and subpart D of part 4287 of this chapter, the lesser of:

(A) Any loss sustained by the Lender on the guaranteed portion, including principal and Interest, through the Interest Termination Date, evidenced by the notes or assumption agreements and secured advances for protection and preservation of Collateral made with the Agency's authorization; or

(B) The guaranteed principal advanced to or assumed by the Borrower and any Interest due thereon through the Interest Termination Date.

(b) Credit quality of Borrower. The Agency will provide guarantees only after consideration is given to the Borrower's overall credit quality and to the terms and conditions of any applicable subsidies, tax credits, and other such incentives.

(c) Quality of loan. All loans guaranteed under this subpart must be financially sound and feasible, with reasonable assurance of repayment.

(d) Gross negligence. Upon written request of the Lender, the Agency will consider changing the negligence standard to Grossly Negligent Loan Origination and Grossly Negligent Loan Servicing on a case-by-case basis. The Lender must establish to the Agency's satisfaction that changing to the gross negligence standard does not materially impair the Agency's interests, solely at the Agency's discretion, subject to:

(1) The lender has demonstrated capacity and experience in making and servicing loans of similar amounts and for transactions of comparable complexity;

(2) The Agency's review of the Lender's underwriting, loan approval and loan servicing policies and procedures, and;

(3) The Agency's review of the Lender's loan servicing plan.

§4279.221   Rights and liabilities.

When a guaranteed portion of a loan is sold to a Holder, the Holder will succeed to all rights of the Lender under the Loan Note Guarantee to the extent of the portion purchased.

(a) The Lender will remain bound to all obligations under the Loan Note Guarantee, Lender's Agreement, and the Agency Program regulations.

(b) A guarantee and right to require purchase will be directly enforceable by a Holder notwithstanding any fraud or misrepresentation by the Lender or any unenforceability of the guarantee by the Lender, except for fraud or misrepresentation of which the Holder had actual knowledge at the time it became the Holder or in which the Holder participates or condones.

(c) The Lender must reimburse the Agency for any payments the Agency makes to a Holder of Lender's guaranteed loan that, under the Loan Note Guarantee, would not have been paid to the Lender had the Lender retained the entire interest in the guaranteed loan and not conveyed an interest to a Holder.

§4279.222   Payments.

A Lender will receive all payments of principal and Interest on account of the entire loan and must promptly remit to the Holder its Pro Rata share of any payment within 30 days of the Lender's receipt thereof from the Borrower, determined according to its respective interest in the loan, less only the Lender's servicing fee.

§4279.223   Sale or assignment of guaranteed loan.

The Lender may Participate or sell all or part of the guaranteed portion of the loan or retain the entire loan. The Lender must fully disburse and properly close a loan prior to sale of any portion of the Promissory Note(s). The Lender cannot Participate or sell any amount of the guaranteed or unguaranteed portion of the loan to the Borrower or its parent, subsidiary or Affiliate or to officers, directors, stockholders, other owners, or members of their Immediate Families. The Lender cannot share any premium received from the sale of a guaranteed loan in the secondary market with a Loan Packager or other Loan Service Provider. The participating Lenders and Holders and the Borrower can have no rights or obligations to one another. If the Lender desires to market all or part of the guaranteed portion of the loan at or subsequent to loan closing, such loan must not be in Default. Lenders may use either the single Promissory Note or multi-note system as outlined in paragraphs (a) and (b) of this section.

(a) Single note system. The entire loan is evidenced by one Promissory Note, and one Loan Note Guarantee is issued. When the loan is evidenced by one Promissory Note, the Lender may not at a later date cause any additional notes to be issued.

(1) The Lender may assign all or part of the guaranteed portion of the loan to one or more Holders by using the Assignment Guarantee Agreement. The Lender must retain title to the Promissory Note. The Lender must complete and execute the Assignment Guarantee Agreement and return it to the Agency for execution prior to Holder execution.

(2) A Holder, upon written notice to the Lender and the Agency, may reassign the unpaid guaranteed portion of the loan, in full, sold under the Assignment Guarantee Agreement. Holders may only reassign the guaranteed portion in the complete block they have received and cannot subdivide or further split the guaranteed portion of a loan or retain an Interest strip.

(3) Upon notification and completion of the assignment through the use of the Assignment Guarantee Agreement, the assignee shall succeed to all rights and obligations of the Holder thereunder. Subsequent assignments require notice to the Lender and Agency using any format, including that used by the Bond Market Association, together with the transfer of the original Assignment Guarantee Agreement.

(4) The Agency will neither execute a new Assignment Guarantee Agreement to effect a subsequent reassignment nor reissue a duplicate Assignment Guarantee Agreement unless:

(i) The original was lost, stolen, destroyed, mutilated, or defaced; and

(ii) The reissue is in accordance with §4279.226.

(5) The Assignment Guarantee Agreement clearly states the percentage and corresponding amount of the guaranteed portion it represents and the Lender's servicing fee. A servicing fee may be charged by the Lender to a Holder and is calculated as a percentage per annum of the unpaid balance of the guaranteed portion of the loan assigned by the Assignment Guarantee Agreement. The Agency is not and will not be a party to any contract between the Lender and another party where the Lender sells its servicing fee in an Arm's Length Transaction. The Agency will not acknowledge, approve, or have any liability to any of the parties of such contract.

(b) Multi-note system. Under this option, the Lender may provide multiple Promissory Notes for the unguaranteed and the guaranteed portions of the loan. All Promissory Notes must reflect the same payment terms. When the Lender selects this option, the Holder will receive one of the Borrower's executed notes and a Loan Note Guarantee. The Agency will issue a Loan Note Guarantee for each Promissory Note, including the unguaranteed Promissory Note(s), to be attached to the Promissory Note(s). An Assignment Guarantee Agreement will not be used when the multi-note option is utilized.

§4279.224   Minimum retention.

The Lender is required to hold a minimum of 7.5 percent of the total loan amount. The amount required to be held must be of the unguaranteed portion of the loan and cannot be Participated to another Person. The Agency may reduce the minimum retention below 7.5 percent on a case by case basis when the Lender establishes to the Secretary's satisfaction that reduction of the minimum retention percentage is to meet compliance with the Lender's regulatory authority. The Lender must retain interest in the Collateral, and retain the servicing responsibilities for the guaranteed loan.

§4279.225   Repurchase from Holder.

(a) Repurchase by Lender. A Lender has the option to repurchase the unpaid guaranteed portion of the loan from a Holder within 30 days of written demand by the Holder when the Borrower is in Default not less than 60 days on principal or Interest due on the loan; or when the Lender has failed to remit to the Holder its Pro Rata share of any payment within 30 days of the Lender's receipt thereof from the Borrower. The repurchase by the Lender will be for an amount equal to the unpaid guaranteed portion of principal and accrued Interest less the Lender's servicing fee. The Holder must concurrently send a copy of the demand letter to the Agency. The Lender must accept an assignment without recourse from the Holder upon repurchase. The Lender is encouraged to repurchase the loan, upon written demand from the Holder, to facilitate the accounting of funds, resolve any loan problem, and resolve the Default, where and when reasonable. The benefit to the Lender is that it may re-sell the guaranteed portion of the loan in order to continue collection of its servicing fee if the Default is cured. The Lender must notify, in writing, the Holder and the Agency of its decision.

(b) Agency repurchase. (1) The Lender's servicing fee will stop on the date that Interest was last paid by the Borrower when the Agency purchases the guaranteed portion of the loan from a Holder. The Lender cannot charge such servicing fee to the Agency and must apply all loan payments and Collateral proceeds received to the guaranteed and unguaranteed portions of the loan on a Pro Rata basis.

(2) If the Agency repurchases 100 percent of the guaranteed portion of the loan, the Agency will not continue collection of the Annual Renewal Fee from the Lender.

(3) If the Lender does not repurchase the unpaid guaranteed portion of the loan as provided in paragraph (a) of this section, the Agency will purchase from the Holder the unpaid principal balance of the guaranteed portion together with accrued Interest to date of repurchase or the Interest Termination Date, whichever is sooner, less the Lender's servicing fee, within 30 days after written demand to the Agency from the Holder.

(4) When Lender has accelerated the account, and subject to the expiration of any forbearance or workout agreement, the Lender, or the Agency at its sole discretion, must issue a letter to the Holder(s) establishing the Interest Termination Date. Accrued Interest to be paid to the Holder(s) will be calculated from the date Interest was last paid on the loan with a termination date not to exceed the Interest Termination Date.

(5) When the Lender has accelerated the account and the Lender holds all or a portion of the guaranteed loan, an estimated loss claim (loan in the liquidation process) must be filed by the Lender with the Agency within 60 days. Accrued Interest paid to the Lender will be calculated from the date Interest was last paid on the loan to the Interest Termination Date.

(6) The Holder's demand to the Agency must include a copy of the written demand made upon the Lender. The Holder must also include evidence of its right to require payment from the Agency. Such evidence must consist of either the original of the Loan Note Guarantee properly endorsed to the Agency or the original of the Assignment Guarantee Agreement properly assigned to the Agency without recourse including all rights, title, and interest in the loan. When the single-note system is utilized and the initial Holder has sold its interest, the current Holder must present the original Assignment Guarantee Agreement and an original of each Agency approved reassignment document in the chain of ownership, with the latest reassignment being assigned to the Agency without recourse, including all rights, title, and interest in the guarantee. The Holder must include in its demand the amount due including unpaid principal, unpaid Interest to date of demand, and Interest subsequently accruing from date of demand to proposed payment date. The Agency will be subrogated to all rights of the Holder.

(7) Upon request by the Agency, the Lender must furnish within 30 days of such request a current statement certified by an appropriate authorized officer of the Lender of the unpaid principal and Interest then owed by the Borrower on the loan and the amount then owed to any Holder, along with the information necessary for the Agency to determine the appropriate amount due the Holder. Any discrepancy between the amount claimed by the Holder and the information submitted by the Lender must be resolved between the Lender and the Holder before payment will be approved. Such conflict will suspend the running of the 30 day payment requirement.

(8) Purchase by the Agency neither changes, alters, nor modifies any of the Lender's obligations to the Agency arising from the loan or guarantee nor does it waive any of Agency's rights against the Lender. The Agency will have the right to set-off against the Lender all rights inuring to the Agency as the Holder of the instrument against the Agency's obligation to the Lender under the guarantee.

(c) Repurchase for servicing. If the Lender, Borrower, and Holder are unable to agree to restructuring of loan repayment, Interest rate, or loan terms to resolve any loan problem or resolve the Default and repurchase of the guaranteed portion of the loan is necessary to adequately service the loan, the Holder must sell the guaranteed portion of the loan to the Lender for an amount equal to the unpaid principal and Interest on such portion less the Lender's servicing fee. The Lender must not repurchase from the Holder for arbitrage or other purposes to further its own financial gain. Any repurchase must only be made after the Lender obtains the Agency's written approval. If the Lender does not repurchase the guaranteed portion from the Holder, the Agency may, at its option, purchase such guaranteed portion for servicing purposes.

§4279.226   Replacement of document.

(a) The Agency may issue a replacement Loan Note Guarantee or Assignment Guarantee Agreement which was lost, stolen, destroyed, mutilated, or defaced to the Lender or Holder upon receipt of an acceptable certificate of loss and an indemnity bond.

(b) When a Loan Note Guarantee or Assignment Guarantee Agreement is lost, stolen, destroyed, mutilated, or defaced while in the custody of the Lender or Holder, the Lender must coordinate the activities of the party who seeks the replacement documents and must submit the required documents to the Agency for processing. The requirements for replacement are as follows:

(1) A certificate of loss, notarized and containing a jurat, which includes:

(i) Name and address of owner;

(ii) Name and address of the Lender of record;

(iii) Capacity of Person certifying;

(iv) Full identification of the Loan Note Guarantee or Assignment Guarantee Agreement including the name of the Borrower, the Agency's case number, date of the Loan Note Guarantee or Assignment Guarantee Agreement, face amount of the evidence of debt purchased, date of evidence of debt, present balance of the loan, percentage of guarantee, and, if an Assignment Guarantee Agreement, the original named Holder and the percentage of the guaranteed portion of the loan assigned to that Holder. Any existing parts of the document to be replaced must be attached to the certificate;

(v) A full statement of circumstances of the loss, theft, destruction, defacement, or mutilation of the Loan Note Guarantee or Assignment Guarantee Agreement; and

(vi) For the Holder, evidence demonstrating current ownership of the Loan Note Guarantee and Promissory Note or the Assignment Guarantee Agreement. If the present Holder is not the same as the original Holder, a copy of the endorsement of each successive Holder in the chain of transfer from the initial Holder to present Holder must be included. If copies of the endorsement cannot be obtained, best available records of transfer must be submitted to the Agency (e.g., order confirmation, canceled checks, etc.).

(2) An indemnity bond acceptable to the Agency must accompany the request for replacement except when the Holder is the United States, a Federal Reserve Bank, a Federal corporation, a State or territory, or the District of Columbia. The indemnity bond must be with surety except when the outstanding principal balance and accrued Interest due the present Holder is less than $1 million verified by the Lender in writing in a letter of certification of balance due. The surety must be a qualified surety company holding a certificate of authority from the Secretary of the Treasury and listed in Treasury Department Circular 570.

(3) All indemnity bonds must be issued and payable to the United States of America acting through the Agency. The bond must be in an amount not less than the unpaid principal and Interest. The bond must hold the Agency harmless against any claim or demand that might arise or against any damage, loss, costs, or expenses that might be sustained or incurred by reasons of the loss or replacement of the instruments.

(4) In those cases where the guaranteed loan was closed under the provision of the multi-note system, the Agency will not attempt to obtain, or participate in the obtaining of, replacement Promissory Notes from the Borrower. The Holder is responsible for bearing the costs of Promissory Note replacement if the Borrower agrees to issue a replacement instrument. Should such Promissory Note be replaced, the terms of the Promissory Note cannot be changed. If the evidence of debt has been lost, stolen, destroyed, mutilated or defaced, such evidence of debt must be replaced before the Agency will replace any instruments.

§4279.227   Equal Credit Opportunity Act.

In accordance with the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (15 U.S.C. 1691, et seq.), with respect to any aspect of a credit transaction, neither the Lender nor the Agency will discriminate against any applicant on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status or age (providing the applicant has the capacity to contract), or because all or part of the applicant's income derives from a public assistance program, or because the applicant has, in good faith, exercised any right under the Consumer Protection Act. The Lender must comply with the requirements of the Equal Credit Opportunity Act as contained in the Federal Reserve Board's Regulation implementing that Act (see 12 CFR part 202) prior to loan closing.

§§4279.228-4279.230   [Reserved]

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