Sask. charging interest on AgriStability overages

Saskatchewan’s crop insurance agency is now adding interest charges on any overpayments farmers may receive through AgriStability.

Saskatchewan Crop Insurance Corp. (SCIC), which administers the federal/provincial ag income stabilization program in that province, began charging interest on such overpayments on Feb. 1, the agency said in a recent notice.

SCIC said it’s "working to align its business practices and this action ensures AgriStability overpayments are treated the same as crop insurance overpayments."

SCIC noted its charges aren’t retroactive and begin only after Feb. 1 — but the charges apply to any overpayments that have occurred since SCIC began administering AgriStability in Saskatchewan.

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The annual interest rate will be Royal Bank prime plus two per cent, adjusted quarterly.

Farmers who still have overpayments outstanding from when AAFC administered Saskatchewan’s program must still follow the federal guidelines for repayment, SCIC said.

The interest-free period on overpayments was to end Jan. 1 in provinces where Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada still delivers the program.

In Saskatchewan, any new overpayment occurring after Feb. 1 will have interest charged but a farmer will get 30 days from notification of the overpayment to repay the balance before interest charges are applied.

Amounts not paid after the 30 days are up will continue to accrue interest at the beginning of each month until the account’s paid in full, SCIC said.

Farmers who had outstanding overpayments were to have received letters last month advising them of the new charges, SCIC noted.

Related stories:
Interest-free period extended on AgriStability overage, Dec. 19, 2011
Interest break extended on CAIS repayments, Dec. 9, 2008

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