Video Explains Mediation for Farmers Facing Financial Difficulties

ISU Extension and Outreach video helps explain process, requirements of mediation

January 9, 2017, 8:59 am | John Lawrence, Chad Hart

AMES, Iowa – When confronted with on-farm hardship, there are ways for farmers to seek help to remedy these situations.

Mediation is an option available to farmers as they work with their creditors to find a mutually beneficial solution to a delinquent secured agricultural debt of $20,000 or more.

“As the farming community has worked through several years of lower commodity prices, some farmers have seen their balance sheets erode and financial stress has increased, leading to financial problems,” said Chad Hart, associate professor in economics and extension grain markets specialist at Iowa State University. “Farm mediation provides a confidential approach to negotiate settlements to financial disputes that allows all parties to come together to construct a plan to settle the financial issues.”

Iowa State University Extension and Outreach has partnered with Iowa Mediation Service to create "Understanding Farm Mediation," a video providing information and tips to help farmers better understand the mediation process.

“Ensuring farmers know how to navigate difficult financial situations is critical to their success,” said John Lawrence, director for Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension and Outreach at Iowa State University. “ISU Extension and Outreach is committed to providing education and resources to help farmers manage all aspects of their farm business.”

While mediation is available should it be needed, ISU Extension and Outreach provides financial resources to help farmers create a financial plan for their operation.

  • The Iowa Concern Hotline provides free legal information to both rural and urban Iowans. Services are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week by calling 1-800-447-1985.
  • The Center for Agricultural Law and Taxation provides information about the application of developments in agricultural law and taxation.
  • Farm Financial Associates are available to provide a no-cost look at a farm’s complete financial situation.
  • Ag Decision Maker is a decision-oriented agricultural business website with articles and other information written by ISU Extension and Outreach economists and farm management specialists.
  • The Beginning Farmer Center helps inform and support those who are getting started in farming. It also works with established farmers on succession planning for when they leave the industry.

Understanding Farm Mediation:

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