7 USC 1922 - Persons eligible for real estate loans

(a) In general 
The Secretary may make and insure loans under this subchapter to farmers and ranchers in the United States, and to farm cooperatives and private domestic corporations, partnerships, joint operations, trusts, and limited liability companies that are controlled by farmers and ranchers and engaged primarily and directly in farming or ranching in the United States, subject to the conditions specified in this section. To be eligible for such loans, applicants who are individuals, or, in the case of cooperatives, corporations, partnerships, joint operations, trusts, and limited liability companies, individuals holding a majority interest in such entity, must
(1)  be citizens of the United States,
(2)  for direct loans only, have either training or farming experience that the Secretary determines is sufficient to assure reasonable prospects of success in the proposed farming operations, taking into consideration all farming experience of the applicant, without regard to any lapse between farming experiences,
(3)  be or will become owner-operators of not larger than family farms (or in the case of cooperatives, corporations, partnerships, joint operations, trusts, and limited liability companies in which a majority interest is held by individuals who are related by blood or marriage, as defined by the Secretary, such individuals must be or will become either owners or operators of not larger than a family farm and at least one such individual must be or will become an operator of not larger than a family farm or, in the case of holders of the entire interest who are related by blood or marriage and all of whom are or will become farm operators, the ownership interest of each such holder separately constitutes not larger than a family farm, even if their interests collectively constitute larger than a family farm, as defined by the Secretary), and

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(4)  be unable to obtain sufficient credit elsewhere to finance their actual needs at reasonable rates and terms, taking into consideration prevailing private and cooperative rates and terms in the community in or near which the applicant resides for loans for similar purposes and periods of time. In addition to the foregoing requirements of this section, in the case of corporations, partnerships, joint operations, trusts, and limited liability companies, the family farm requirement of clause (3) of the preceding sentence shall apply as well to the farm or farms in which the entity has an ownership and operator interest and the requirement of clause (4) of the preceding sentence shall apply as well to the entity in the case of cooperatives, corporations, partnerships, joint operations, trusts, and limited liability companies.
(b) Direct loans 

(1) In general 
Subject to paragraph (3), the Secretary may make a direct loan under this subchapter only to a farmer or rancher who has participated in the business operations of a farm or ranch for not less than 3 years and
(A) is a qualified beginning farmer or rancher;
(B) has not received a previous direct farm ownership loan made under this subchapter; or
(C) has not received a direct farm ownership loan under this subchapter more than 10 years before the date the new loan would be made.
(2) Youth loans 
The operation of an enterprise by a youth under section 1941 (b) of this title shall not be considered the operation of a farm or ranch for purposes of paragraph (1).
(3) Transition rule 

(A) In general 
Subject to subparagraphs (B) and (C), the Secretary may make a direct loan under this subchapter to a farmer or rancher who has a direct loan outstanding under this subchapter on April 4, 1996.
(B) Less than 5 years 
If, as of April 4, 1996, a farmer or rancher has had a direct loan outstanding under this subchapter for less than 5 years, the Secretary shall not make a loan to the farmer or rancher under subparagraph (A) after the date that is 10 years after April 4, 1996.

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(C) 5 years or more 
If, as of April 4, 1996, a farmer or rancher has had a direct loan outstanding under this subchapter for 5 years or more, the Secretary shall not make a loan to the farmer or rancher under subparagraph (A) after the date that is 5 years after April 4, 1996.
(D) Notice 
Beginning with fiscal year 2000 not later than 12 months before a borrower will become ineligible for direct loans under this subchapter by reason of this paragraph, the Secretary shall notify the borrower of such impending ineligibility.