Crop Insurance News
5/16/2018
two tracks in field
Damaged corn from hail

NOW IS THE TIME TO SIGN UP FOR HAIL INSURANCE–

While they used to be considered a fairly rare event historically speaking, storms that are capable of producing hail are becoming far more commonplace in our area of the country than even 20 years ago. Hail is a separate policy from your multi-peril crop insurance (MPCI) coverage. Federal crop insurance covers hail damage as it relates to yield reduction, but producers can also purchase separate hail coverage for their crops from the same companies that offer federal crop insurance. As an added bonus, a hail policy can provide coverage for fire, lightning, vandalism/malicious mischief and transit to the first place of storage.
 
Hail insurance is based on the percent of damage received at a particular growth stage, which allows insurance companies to perform adjustments and pay indemnities during a growing season, without having to wait until harvest. Rates and coverage vary by crop and county. Keep in mind, hail insurance must be purchased before damage occurs. Below are some other important items to note regarding hail coverage. 
 
• Most hail insurance covers other perils above and beyond hail damage. Beyond hail, most policies also cover fire, vandalism and malicious mischief, transit to the first point of storage, and stored grain coverage if you happen to have a bin(s) at home.

• Hail coverage is available on most any crop; if you do not have a Federal crop insurance option, you can usually get it covered for hail.

• A customer is able to carry a Federal MPCI policy as well as a hail policy, and collect on both in the event of a loss.

• Hail coverage is based on a dollar amount of coverage per acre, with premiums generally quoted per $100 of coverage. For example, if someone wanted to cover their corn at $700 per acre, and the premium was 60 cents per $100 of coverage, their premium for corn would be $4.20 per acre.

• One benefit of hail insurance over MPCI is that you can insure up to the total expected value of the crop, whereas on MPCI you are limited to 85 percent.  

• Hail coverage generally has many different endorsements available, including quality endorsements on crops intended for fresh market, canning reject endorsements, etc.

To learn more about a hail policy, including options available and coverage with a hail policy, contact your GreenStone crop insurance specialist today to set up an appointment to review your options. 

Prevented Plant or Replant Rules Have Changed
If weather conditions prevent you from planting or you need to replant a crop, you may qualify for a claim. File a claim with your crop insurance specialist before replanting. Do not replant until you have received approval to do so or, you may not receive an indemnity. If you have a prevent plant situation, a claim must be filed within 72 hours after the end of the late planting period which varies by crop. (There is a minimum requirement of 20 percent of the unit or 20 acres for both replant and prevent plant claims, whichever is less.) Some important changes were made for the current crop year in regards to both replant and prevent plant rules. Depending on the timing of the replant period, weather and field conditions, you could be required to replant. Please contact your crop insurance specialist for the most current rules and guidelines. ¦

First Crop/Second Crop
If you are considering removing a first crop to plant a second, make sure you contact your crop insurance agent before doing so. You could potentially be eligible for a claim, but you may forfeit that eligibility if you act before contacting your agent to discuss your options! ¦

Early/Final Plant Dates
Early and final plant dates vary by crop, county and state. Coverage levels can be reduced if a crop is planted too early or too late. Please check with your crop insurance specialist or actuarial documents for specific details and dates for your county if you are unsure about which dates apply to your policy. ¦

Organic Crops
As a reminder, RMA now requires all insured organic certified producers to provide a copy of their organic crop plan and organic certificate to their agent before the acreage reporting date. ¦

Acreage Reports
Appraisals are required when a customer plans to do something with the crop other than harvest in the normal manner.  If you do not plan to take your wheat/forage crop to harvest, we must appraise the acres prior to destruction. ¦

2018 Fall Wheat & Forage Claims
The earlier you start on reporting your planted crop acres, the earlier your crop insurance specialist can process your reports and return for your review. It is the customer’s responsibility to report the crop that was planted in each section, the planting date and your percent share of that crop. Reporting your crop accurately and double-checking everything on the Schedule of Insurance is very important. Corrections or changes cannot be made after the July 15 reporting deadline. You do not need to report to FSA before reporting your planted acres to your crop insurance specialist. If you use precision planting technology, GreenStone can save you time reporting acres. Contact your local GreenStone crop insurance team to learn more. ¦

Crop Insurance Alerts!
Crop Insurance Alert postcards have been redesigned and will be mailed out on an “as needed” basis to customers. The goal is to communicate to you any vital information we receive. The front of the post card is printed in red so, when you receive one, please pay attention to its message.  That way, any required action on your part can be completed on a timely basis. ¦

Enterprise Units Structure
The added subsidy on the enterprise unit structure makes it an affordable option for many producers. The downside is, if you don’t end up planting the required acreage, your policy can revert back to a basic unit structure, and your premium could increase substantially. There are two requirements to qualify for enterprise units:

You must farm in two or more separate sections.

  –AND–

At least 20 acres, or 20 percent of your individual crop acreage, whichever is less, must be planted in that second section.

Adverse spring weather has the potential to cause prevented planting which could take some producers out of enterprise unit eligibility. Make sure to contact your crop insurance agent if you anticipate any issues with meeting the enterprise unit requirements. 

IMPORTANT– 
CLAIMS & APPRAISALS

Most producers have been there before. No matter what you do during the growing season, sometimes Mother Nature just will not cooperate, and you begin anticipating your yields may fall below your guarantee. Obviously, this is not the situation you would like to be in, but that is why you purchased crop insurance. If you do find yourself in a claims situation, there are some important things to remember to help the process go more smoothly.

Insurance coverage generally begins at time of application or time of planting, whichever is later. The end of the insurance period is the earlier of total destruction of the crop, final harvest of the crop, abandonment of the crop, or the end of the insurance period (October 31 for wheat). It is the insured’s responsibility to notify the insurance company within 72 hours of the initial discovery of the damage or production loss, but no later than 15 days after the end of the insurance period, even if the crop has not been harvested. If you have a revenue protection policy and have a claim based strictly on price, the insurance company must be notified within 45 days of the harvest price announcement for the crop. The RMA is enforcing these rules and have been known to decline late filed claim requests and have even requested repayment from an insured for paid claims that were improperly filed. 

Remembering these key points will help avoid any problems with your claim and make the process go much better. As always, if you have questions based on what you have read, please contact your crop insurance specialist. ¦


https://issuu.com/greenstonefcs/docs/gs_partners_springweb/34


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