Q: What is the Pandemic Livestock Indemnity Program?
A: USDA’s Pandemic Livestock Indemnity Program (PLIP) is a new program that provides financial relief to eligible producers of swine, chickens, and turkeys who suffered losses due to insufficient access to processing facilities during the coronavirus pandemic. PLIP provides financial relief for those losses and for the cost of depopulation and disposal. This new program is part of USDA’s Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative.
Q: What USDA agency is administering PLIP?
A: PLIP is administered by USDA’s Farm Service Agency.
Q: When does the signup period for PLIP open and close?
A: USDA’s Farm Service Agency will accept PLIP applications from July 20 through September 17, 2021.
Q: Are PLIP funds a loan that must be repaid? Is there a fee to apply?
A: No. PLIP is not a loan program and there is no fee to apply.
Q: I haven’t previously participated in any USDA programs. Can I apply for PLIP?
A: Yes. Participation in other USDA programs is not a prerequisite to apply for PLIP.
Q: Is there an Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) limit to receive PLIP assistance?
A: Yes. To be eligible for PLIP, an individual or legal entity must have an average adjusted gross income (AGI) of less than $900,000 for tax years 2016, 2017, and 2018. With respect to joint ventures and general partnerships, this AGI provision will be applied to members of the joint venture and general partnership. AGI provisions are applicable to members of a legal entity, including a general partnership or joint venture who are at or above the fourth tier of ownership in the business structure. The eligible poultry or livestock owner’s payment will be reduced by the portion of a payment attributed to a member who exceeds the $900,000 AGI limitation or is otherwise ineligible for payment.
Q: What is the funding source for PLIP?
A: The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, allocated funding for PLIP to provide assistance to producers for losses of livestock and poultry depopulated from March 1, 2020, through December 26, 2020, due to insufficient processing access, and for the cost of depopulation and disposal.
Q: What livestock and poultry are eligible for PLIP?
A: Eligible livestock and poultry include swine, chickens, and turkeys. USDA’s Farm Service Agency has determined that producers of these livestock and poultry types suffered losses and incurred costs for depopulation due to insufficient process access during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Deputy Administrator for Farm Programs may announce additional eligible livestock categories if USDA later determines that other livestock were also depopulated due to insufficient processing access due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Q: I produce swine, chickens, and/or turkeys. How do I know if I am eligible for PLIP?
A: PLIP provides financial assistance to support producers of eligible swine, chickens, and turkeys depopulated from March 1, 2020, through December 26, 2020. To be eligible, depopulation of your poultry or livestock must have been due to insufficient processing access resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. Livestock and poultry also must have been physically located in the United States or a territory of the United States at the time of depopulation.
Additional eligibility requirements include legal ownership, average adjusted gross income, and conservation compliance provisions, among others. Visit farmers.gov/plip for a full list of program eligibility requirements.
Q: Are contract growers eligible for PLIP? What about packers or poultry dealers?
A: No. To be eligible for PLIP, individuals and legal entities must have had legal ownership of the livestock or poultry as of the day of depopulation. Packers, live poultry dealers, and contract growers are not eligible for PLIP.
Additional support for contract producers impacted by the coronavirus pandemic is expected through USDA’s Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative. Visit farmers.gov/pandemic-assistance to learn more.
Q: How will PLIP payments be calculated for producers of eligible livestock or poultry?
A: PLIP provides financial assistance to support producers of eligible swine, chickens, and turkeys depopulated from March 1, 2020, through December 26, 2020. PLIP payments will compensate eligible producers for 80 percent of the loss of the eligible livestock or poultry, and for the cost of depopulation and disposal, based on a single payment rate per head. Payment rates per head are outlined by category at farmers.gov/plip.
Please note, any previous payments you received for disposal of your animals under a state program or USDA’s Environmental Quality Incentives Program will be subtracted from the final PLIP payment amount. The payments will also be reduced by any CFAP 1 and CFAP 2 payments paid on the same inventory of swine that were depopulated.
Your expected PLIP payment can be calculated using the payment rate per head of your specific livestock or poultry and the following equation:
Expected PLIP Payment = (PLIP Payment Rate Per Head X # Head Depopulated) – Previous Payments
There is no per person or legal entity payment limitation on PLIP payments.
Q: How did USDA determine the payment rates per head for each category of livestock or poultry?
A: To simplify administration of PLIP, USDA’s Farm Service Agency has determined a single payment rate per head for each of the livestock and poultry categories outlined in the table at farmers.gov/plip. The categories and market values are consistent with the categories and nationwide prices used to administer the Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP) for 2020. The estimated cost of depopulation is factored in and is based on the average costs of common methods used, as provided by the Animal Plant and Health Inspection Service. The estimated cost of disposal is also factored in and is based on the costs of common disposal methods and rates used in USDA’s Environmental Quality Incentives Program.
Q: When are PLIP payments expected to begin?
A: Farm Service Agency county offices will process applications as they receive them beginning July 20, 2021. Program approval is handled at the local level and the timeline for this approval process, including required internal controls and data validation, varies from county to county. Payments will be made shortly after applications are approved.
Q: Is there a payment limitation for PLIP?
A: No. There is no payment limitation for PLIP.
Q. Can PLIP payments be withheld to satisfy a debt?
A: No. These payments will not be subject to administrative offset. This means the payments will not be withheld to satisfy any USDA debts nor will they be offset by Treasury.
Q. Are PLIP payments going to be counted as taxable income?
A: The Farm Service Agency reports program payments to the Internal Revenue Service and program participants on a CCC-1099-G. This report is a service to help program participants report taxable income. Please consult with the IRS or your tax preparer for any additional questions on how this income impacts your business.
How to Apply
Q: How can I prepare to apply for PLIP?
A: A full list of program eligibility requirements and information on applying is available at farmers.gov/plip. We recommend you review this list before initiating your application.
Your local Farm Service Agency (FSA) staff will work with you to fill out the PLIP application. Visit farmers.gov/service-locator to find contact information for the FSA office at your local USDA Service Center. FSA staff are available to support you in preparing your application. You may also call 877-508-8364 to speak directly with a USDA employee ready to offer assistance or answer any questions.
Q: How do I apply for PLIP?
A: You can apply for PLIP through the Farm Service Agency office at your local USDA Service Center. Visit farmers.gov/plip for a full set of application requirements, including forms that will be needed to finalize your application. USDA staff are available to assist with every step of your application process.
Q: Do I need to work with a third-party entity to complete my PLIP application.
A: No. USDA helps applicants complete program applications and other paperwork free of charge. USDA Service Center staff can guide you through the process of preparing and submitting required paperwork to apply for PLIP on your own, with no need to hire a paid preparer. Language translation services are available in all USDA Service Centers, so one-on-one assistance with a Service Center employee can be translated in real time for applicants requiring translations.
Q: What documents do I need to submit with my PLIP application?
A: The forms needed to complete your PLIP application are available for download at farmers.gov/plip. These include the program application form – FSA-620 – along with forms to confirm your personal information, confirm average adjusted gross income, and certify compliance with USDA conservation compliance provisions, among others. If requested by FSA, you may need to provide supporting documentation to substantiate the information on your application and ownership of the livestock and poultry claimed on the application.
Q: My local USDA Service Center is not open for walk-in service. How does this impact how I’ll submit my application?
A: We are committed to delivering USDA services while taking safety measures in response to the pandemic. Some USDA offices are open to limited visitors by appointment only. Service Center staff also continue to work with agricultural producers via phone, email, and other digital tools. Please call the Farm Service Agency office at your local USDA Service Center to schedule an appointment if you’d like assistance or have questions about applying for PLIP.
A call center is available for applicants who would like additional one-on-one support with the PLIP application process over the phone. Please call 877-508-8364 to speak directly with a USDA employee ready to offer support. The call center can provide service to non-English speaking customers. Customers will select 1 for English and 2 for Spanish. For other languages, customers select 1 and indicate their language to the call center staff.
Q: I’ve never worked with USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) previously. How do I connect with my local FSA office to get started with my application?
A: There is a Farm Service Agency (FSA) office located in nearly every county across the United States. Visit farmers.gov/service-locator to find the contact information for your local office. We recommend you call your office to connect directly with FSA staff who can talk with you about the program, eligibility requirements, and how to apply. You may also contact our call center at 877-508-8364 to speak directly with a USDA employee ready to offer support. At USDA, we are here to make your application process as easy as possible and will provide support every step of the way.