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Indiana Agricultural Law Foundation January 2017 Issue
InAgLaw Hdr

Beef Checkoff Suit Could be a "Test Case"

Brianna J. Schroeder
Brianna J. Schroeder
Janzen Agricultural Law, LLC

A lawsuit in Montana is grabbing the attention of checkoff boards across the country.

The Rancher-Cattlemen Action Legal Fund (R-CALF) sued the Montana state beef checkoff council in May, asking a federal court to issue a preliminary injunction prohibiting the council from spending federal checkoff dollars on advertising unless the state cattle producers paying the fees agree to it.

This past fall, a magistrate heard arguments from both sides, and in December he made an official recommendation to the federal judge to stop the council's advertising spending without cattlemen approval. The checkoff council filed objections to the magistrate’s recommendation for preliminary injunction on December 23, 2016. R-CALF replied on January 5, 2017. The federal judge will make the official ruling after reviewing the relevant pleading and the magistrate’s recommendation.

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