Colleen Cashell, executive director of the United States Department of Agriculture's Farm Service Agency in Washington County, has issued a reminder to foreign investors with an interest in agricultural lands in the United States that they are required to report their holdings and any transactions to the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture.
"Any foreign person who acquires or transfers any interest, other than a security interest, in agricultural land in the United States is required by law to report the transaction no later than 90 days after the date of the transaction," Cashell said.
Foreign investors must file Agricultural Foreign Investment Disclosure Act reports with the Farm Service Agency County Office that maintains reports for the county where the land sits. For disclosure purposes, agricultural land is defined as any land used for farming, ranching or timber production, if the tracts total 10 acres or more.
"Failure to file a report, filing a late report or filing an inaccurate report can result in a penalty with fines up to 25 percent of the fair market value of the agricultural land," Cashell said.