The Department of Justice enforces the law and defends the interest of the United States, ensuring public safety against threats foreign and domestic; providing Federal leadership in preventing and controlling crime; seeking just punishment for those guilty of unlawful pursuits; and ensuring fair and impartial administration of justice for all Americans.
Uses and Use Restrictions
The Comprehensive Crime Control Act of 1984 authorized federal officials to implement a national asset forfeiture program.
One ancillary benefit of asset forfeiture is the authorization to share federal forfeiture proceeds with cooperating state and local law enforcement agencies, which provides agencies with valuable additional resources without burdening tax payer dollars.
The Guide to Equitable Sharing for State and Local Law Enforcement Agencies (Guide) outlines the policies and procedures governing the receipt, use, maintenance and reporting of forfeited funds received through the Department of Justice Equitable Sharing Program (Program).
The Guide is supplemented with the National Code of Professional Conduct for Asset Forfeiture and all Program participants must ensure compliance with the Code.
Except as noted in the Guide, equitably shared funds must be used by law enforcement agencies for law enforcement purposes only.
Permitted expenditures listed in the Guide are pre-approved uses of shared funds and property, subject to policies and statutes governing the use of public funds.
The fact that shared property was forfeited as a result of a particular federal violation does not limit its use.
A state or local law enforcement agency meeting eligibility requirements set forth in the Guide and that directly participates in an investigation or prosecution resulting in a federal forfeiture may request an equitable share of the net proceeds of the forfeiture.
For purposes of equitable sharing, the Department of Justice defines a law enforcement agency as a state or local government organization authorized to engage in, as its primary function, the investigation and apprehension, or the prosecution of individuals suspected or convicted of offenses against the criminal laws of the United States or of any state, county, municipality, or territory of the United States.
A state National Guard generally does not meet the law enforcement agency criteria for participation in the Program because its primary mission is a military or other non-law enforcement purpose.
However, a National Guard Counterdrug unit may qualify for sharing if: (1) It is a distinct unit of a state National Guard that has counterdrug activities as its primary mission and receives funding solely for this purpose; or (2) It is a military police or similar state National Guard unit that provides support to federal law enforcement agencies in counterdrug activities.
A state or local law enforcement agency meeting eligibility requirements set forth in the Guide and that directly participates in an investigation or prosecution that results in a federal forfeiture may request an equitable share of the net proceeds of the forfeiture.
The federal deciding authority must approve all sharing requests and recommendations, including sharing percentages negotiated in a task force or other agreement, before sharing occurs. Sharing will only be awarded to agencies that are compliant Program participants in good standing with the policies set forth in the Guide. This program is excluded from coverage under 2 CFR 200, Subpart E - Cost Principles.
Aplication and Award Process
Preapplication coordination is not applicable.
Environmental impact information is not required for this program.
This program is excluded from coverage under E.O.
This program is excluded from coverage under 2 CFR 200, Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles, and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards. After the seizure or forfeiture of an identified asset, a participating state or local agency meeting all requirements set forth in the Guide may request a share of the property by submitting a Form DAG-71, Equitable Sharing Request Form, to the federal seizing agency. A separate Form DAG-71 must be completed for each asset to be shared.
Federal law authorizes the Attorney General to share federally forfeited property with participating state and local law enforcement agencies. The exercise of this authority is discretionary and limited by statute. The Attorney General is not required to share property in any case. No sharing request or recommendation is final until approved by the federal deciding authority. The equitable sharing deciding authority levels are specified in the Guide.
Contact the headquarters or regional office, as appropriate, for application deadlines.
The Controlled Substances Act, 21 U.S.C 881(e); Civil Asset Forfeiture Reform Act (CAFRA), 18 U.S.C 981(e)(2).
Range of Approval/Disapproval Time
From 120 to 180 days. The DAG-71 form must be submitted within 60 days of seizure of the asset. Late submissions will be accepted and reviewed on a case by case basis. Sharing determinations are generally made 120 to 180 days after forfeiture. However, longer periods may be required in complex cases.
The exercise of this authority is discretionary and limited by statute. It is not subject to appeal or court review.
Formula and Matching Requirements
This program has no statutory formula. This program has no matching requirements. Equitable sharing funds are eligible to cover the costs associated with paying a state or local law enforcement agency's matching contribution or share in a grant program, provided that the grant permits use of other federal funds to cover the match and the grant funds are used for a permissible law enforcement purpose in accordance with the Guide. Equitable sharing awards have non-supplanting requirements. MOE requirements are not applicable to this program.
Length and Time Phasing of Assistance
Not Applicable. See the following for information on how assistance is awarded/released: Funds are disbursed to participating agencies upon approval of individual asset sharing decisions.
Post Assistance Requirements
To ensure effective management, promote public confidence in the integrity of the Program, and protect the Program against potential waste, fraud, and abuse, participating agencies must follow reporting requirements in order to receive any distribution of money or property through the Program.
To maintain compliance, a state or local law enforcement agency must annually submit to the Department of Justice Asset Forfeiture and Money Laundering Section (AFMLS) a signed Equitable Sharing Agreement and Certification form within 60 days after the end of the agency?s fiscal year, regardless of whether funds were received or maintained during the fiscal year.
The form must be signed by the heads of both the law enforcement agency and the governing body.
By signing the form?s Affidavit, the signatories agree to be bound by the policies that govern the Program, including but not limited to supplantation, the use, maintenance, and reporting of funds.
Please see description under 'Program Report'.
Please see description under 'Program Report'.
Please see description under 'Program Report'.
Performance monitoring is not applicable.
In accordance with the provisions of 2 CFR 200, Subpart F - Audit Requirements, non-Federal entities that expend financial assistance of $750,000 or more in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-Federal entities that expend less than $750,000 a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in 2 CFR 200.503. In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-133 (Revised, June 27, 2003), 'Audits of States, Local Governments, and Non-Profit Organizations,' nonfederal entities that expend financial assistance in excess of the applicable threshold in Federal awards will have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-federal entities that expend less than the applicable threshold in a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in Circular No. A-133.
Financial records, supporting documents, and all other records pertinent to equitable sharing shall be retained for a period of 5 years following the conclusion of Federal assistance.
15-5042-0-2-752 - Asset Forfeiture Fund, Equitable Sharing.
(Direct Payments for Specified Use) FY 15 $361,589,000; FY 16 Estimate Not Available; and FY 17 Estimate Not Available
Range and Average of Financial Assistance
No Data Available.
Regulations, Guidelines, and Literature
Guide to Equitable Sharing for State and Local Law Enforcement Agencies (April 2009).
Regional or Local Office
Asset Forfeiture and Money Laundering Section 1400 New York Avenue, NW, Washington , District of Columbia 20005 Email: email@example.com Phone: 202-514-1263
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