Listening to crop insurance salesmen, company managers and crop adjustors isn't a pleasant task these days. They're already swamped with claims, and they're trying to educate people as quickly as possible about what farmers should do if they think they have a claim.
To drive the point home, after listening to officials from Diversified Services, here's what not to do if you want to keep your insurance agent and crop insurance company on your side.
One: "I just combined my crop today. It wasn't as good as I thought. I need to file a claim."
Ouch! There is an immediate problem, says Doug Emery, Diversified Services. All companies follow rules laid out by the Risk Management Agency, part of USDA. He says the rules are very specific.
"We have to know ahead of time and definitely before you combine so that you can file a valid claim," he says. "If you didn't leave a representative strip, it becomes hard to evaluate."
Two: "I combined my corn today. It was lousy. I left a couple rows in the 80-acre field. Can you come inspect it?"
That's still an 'ouch.' RMA lays out specific rules for how much unharvested crop must be left for the adjustor to examine at maturity. The amount to be left varies depending upon the size of the field. It's obviously much more than two rows in 80 acres!
Three: "I'm going to combine that bad field tomorrow. Can you get somebody out here?"
That's maybe not an ouch, but it's a grumble. The agent can perhaps tell you how much to leave. But they need much more advance notice to handle a claim properly. Diversified Services promises that after you notify your agent, and he notifies the regional person in charge, you will hear from an adjustor in 24 hours. Call now if you are confident you will have a claim, not the night before.