More Crop Insurance Rules You May Not Know

Make sure you know the consequences before deciding what to do with wet fields.

Published on: Jun 3, 2011

Earlier a crop adjustor who agreed to speak to us noted that there are heavy restrictions if you declare prevented planting on corn at the June 5 date, but still think you're going to plant soybeans. Basically, you can't plant beans and still collect the prevented corn payment unless you wait until July 1 to plant, plus many strings are attached, such as only getting 35% of the prevented planting payment for corn and accumulating less corn base history.

Here are some more clarifications for both corn and soybeans that you should be aware of before deciding on your best options if you have ground that is pushing the limit on being unable to be farmed this year,.

Take money, you're done- If you declare prevented planting, don't intend to plant soybeans, and take the payment allotted under your policy, then no crop can be grown in that field until November 1. For example, you can't decide to go out and plant a few spots that dry out in beans and expect to harvest them. If you take the full payment, the field is done for crop production for all intents and purposes for the year. That includes no harvesting of hay as well.

Skip the payment, soybeans still insured- If you decide you don't want to plant corn on June 7, but want to plant beans instead, and haven't declared prevented planning on corn, you're free to do so. When you turn your acreage into your agent later, the soybeans will be insured, and premiums will be adjusted to reflect the change.

One more restriction- If you declare prevented planting and decide to go for the plant soybeans July 1 option, you must take out crop insurance on those soybeans.

The 72-hour rule- By crop insurance policy, you have 72 hours after the late planting period, which ends June 30, to declare prevented planting. After the 72 hours elapses, you can no longer claim it if you change your mind. You can declare prevented planting anytime after June 5, the final plant date, for corn. However, if you declare prevented planting, you can elect to withdraw the claim and plant soybeans without having to wait until July 1.

Special note- Crop insurance officials emphasize that these are crop insurance reporting dates. The Farm Service Agency follows a different set of dates. Prevented planting for corn must be reported to FSA by June 20.

Late-plant date for soybeans- The date for soybeans that corresponds with June 5 for corn is June 20 in Indiana. The final date for planting soybeans is July 15.

One more restriction- Just in case you're still hung up on declaring prevented planting for corn but planting beans later, you lose 1% of your guarantee per day, as with corn. So if you plant soybeans July 1, the first allowable date if you took prevented planting for corn, you must have insurance on the beans, but you've already lost 10% on your guarantee on the soybean insurance contract..

Prevented planting payment rate- If you choose to file for prevented planting on corn and walk away from the field for the year, realize that the calculation rate for payment is different in 2011 than in 2010. Before, you received the higher of your rate at the start of the season, or the harvest price in the fall. The harvest price option was eliminated. So you can calculate what you would get from delayed payment before you decide.