Farm Service Agency Makes Administrative Change to the Livestock Indemnity Program

CANADIAN, Texas, April 24, 2018 – Starting today, agricultural producers who have lost livestock to disease, resulting from a weather disaster, have an additional way to become eligible for a key U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) disaster assistance program. USDA Under Secretary for Farm Production and Conservation Bill Northey announced an administrative clarification nationwide to the Livestock Indemnity Program. In the event of disease, this change by USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) authorizes local FSA county committees to accept veterinarian certifications that livestock deaths were directly related to adverse weather and unpreventable through good animal husbandry and management. The committees may then use this certification to allow eligibility for producers on a case-by-case basis for LIP.

“This change is part of USDA’s broader effort to better serve America’s farmers, ranchers and foresters through flexible and effective programs,” said Northey, who is in Texas today visiting with ranchers impacted by drought and wildfire. “America’s farmers feed our nation and much of the world, and throughout history they have known good years and bad years. But when disaster strikes, USDA is ready to step in and help.”

LIP provides benefits to agricultural producers for livestock deaths in excess of normal mortality caused by adverse weather, disease or by attacks by animals reintroduced into the wild by the federal government. Eligible weather events include earthquakes, hail, tornadoes, hurricanes, storms, blizzard and flooding. Earlier this year, Congress amended the LIP program to cover losses incurred by selling livestock at a reduced price following a disaster, and the $125,000 payment limitation was also removed.


DATE:                   Thursday, April 19, 2018

RE:          Livestock Disaster Programs in H.R. 2 as currently passed out of the House AG Committee. 

While these are positive changes listed below, please know that we are still in the beginning stages of this Farm Bill process.  We will continue to work with the Senate in hopes that their Farm Bill language mirrors these and the other changes that NCBA is pleased to see thus far within the House bill, H.R. 2.  However, a lot can change, so we will be vigilant as the full process moves forward.  If you have any questions, please let me know.  Thank you, Allison


Modifications to Disaster Programs in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (all changes retroactive to 1/1/17)

Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP)

•             No longer subject to $125,000 (LIP, LFP, ELAP combined) payment limit

•             Makes producers eligible for a partial payment if livestock is injured by an applicable weather event, resulting in a sale price less than what the LIP indemnity would have been.

Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm Raised Fish (ELAP)

•             Elimination of the $20 million annual cap on ELAP expenditures

•             Payments may now be made immediately following the filing of the notice of loss, rather than having to wait until the end of the year to determine the reduction factor.

Modifications to Disaster Programs in the Agriculture and Nutrition Act of 2018 (all changes retroactive to 1/1/17)

Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP)

•             Adds death due to disease as an eligible cause of loss if the disease is transmitted by a vector and not susceptible to vaccination or management practices (previously only deaths due to disease caused by a weather event were eligible)

Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm Raised Fish (ELAP)

•             Elimination of the $125,000 payment limit

Adjusted Gross Income Exemption

•             For all disaster programs, persons or entities that derive greater than 75% of their adjusted gross income from farming, ranching, or silviculture activities are completely exempted from the $900,000 AGI means test.

Washington Cattlemen's Association | P.O. Box 96 | Ellensburg, WA 98926 | 509-925-9871

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