Recent flooding has forced many crop producers to reexamine their timeline for planting this spring. Planting a crop early provides the best chance for optimum yields, but what happens when tillage and planting are not able to be accomplished as early as desired?
Steve Johnson, farm management specialist with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, has compiled a list of frequently asked questions regarding prevented planting and the options farmers have.
1. When is prevented planting available?
Prevented planting must be due to an insured cause of loss that is general in the surrounding area and that prevents other producers from planting acreage with similar characteristics. Failure to plant when other producers in the area were planting will result in denial of the prevented planting claim.
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There’s also a 20/20 Rule – a minimum of 20 acres or 20 percent of the unit must be affected. Total acres of planted and prevented planted cannot exceed the total cropland acres. Prevented planting claims must be filed with your crop insurance agent by June 28 for corn and July 13 for soybeans. Prevented planting acres must be reported on the FSA Form 578 acreage report. That deadline to file that form in Iowa is July 15, 2019.
2. When is prevented planting not available?
On ground that is insured through a New Breaking Written Agreement; Conservation Program Reserve land that is in its first year out of CRP; on ground where a pasture or forage crop is in place during the time of planting; when other producers in the area are able to plant; and on county-based crop insurance area policies such as AYP and ARPI.
3. How much do I get paid for prevented planting?
55 percent of the initial revenue guarantee on corn and 60 percent on soybeans.
- An example payment for corn would look like the following: 190 bushels APH x 80% x $4.00/bu = $608 initial revenue guarantee x 55% = $334.40/acre PP payment.
- For soybeans, an example is: 55 bushels APH x 80% x $9.54/bu = $419.76 initial revenue guarantee x 60% = $251.86/acre PP payment.
- Note that payments for prevented planting use the projected price (new crop futures price average in February).
4. How are eligible acres for prevented planting determined?
The insurance company considers each of the insured’s crops in each county. They look at the maximum number of acres reported for insurance and certified in any of the four most recent crop years. The acres must have been planted in one of the last three crop years.
5. What happens if you are prevented from planting and there are not enough eligible acres for the crop being claimed?
When the insured runs out of acreage eligibility for one crop, the remaining prevented planting acres will be “rolled” to another crop, such as corn to soybeans.
6. What happens to my APH – actual production history – if I take prevented planting?
The insured farmer who receives prevented planting on a crop does not have to report the actual yield for the year. Generally, prevented planting will not impact the APH yield in future years, unless a second crop is planted on prevented planting acres.
7. What happens if the first crop is prevented planting, but the second crop is planted?
If the second crop is planted, it MUST be insured if there was insurance for that crop elected on or before March 15, 2019. The second crop must have been planted AFTER June 25 for corn and July 10 for soybeans. If the insured farmer plants a second crop they will still receive 35 percent of the indemnity for the prevented planting crop and pay only 35 percent of the premium.
Planting a second crop on prevented planting ground affects the following year’s APH:
- First crop – you receive 60 percent of the approved yield (190 bu/A APH X 60% = 114 bu/A).
- Second crop – actual yields are used for APH.
8. What will crop insurance adjusters need to do for prevented planting claims?
Visually inspect all prevented planting acres to determine:
- Acres are within 5 percent of what was on the acreage report.
- Whether the acres are left idle, or whether a cover crop or second crop has been planted.
- What the cause of loss was, and if it is general to the area.
- Determine eligible acres.
- Roll acres to other crops if insured is short of eligible acres for reported prevented planting crop.
9. What are the deadlines for filing prevented planting in Iowa?
These dates vary by state, but tend to be three days after the last day of the late planting period.
- In Iowa, the deadline for filing prevented planting with your crop insurance agent is June 28 for corn and July 13 for soybeans.
- Acreage reporting deadline is July 15.
- Prevented planting acres listed on your acreage report (FSA Form 578) should match the information provided to your crop insurance agent in order to qualify for a full indemnity payment.
- Work with your crop insurance agent well in advance of these dates regarding a prevented planting claim and whether a cover crop or a second crop will be planted.
10. If I have to leave some of my acres unplanted (prevented planting), will they still count toward my eligibility for enterprise units?
Only planted acres are considered when determining eligibility for enterprise units. To qualify for enterprise units on crop insurance policy, at least the smaller of 20 acres or 20 percent of planted acres must be in two or more different township sections.
For example, a farm with 200 acres each in two sections would normally qualify for enterprise units. However, if fewer than 20 acres are planted in one of the sections, the farm would no longer qualify. Possible increases in crop insurance premiums due to a change in unit designation should be considered when deciding whether or not to file a prevented planting claim on some acres.
11. If I take prevented planting on some of my fields and plant a cover crop, when can I harvest or graze the cover crop?
If you plant any kind of cover crop and expect to receive a crop insurance indemnity payment for prevented planting, you cannot harvest or graze those acres until after Nov. 1.
More details can be found in the ISU Extension and Outreach Ag Decision Maker publication “Delayed and Prevented Planting Provisions.” An electronic decision spreadsheet is also available to help analyze alternative actions. Producers should communicate with their crop insurance agent before making decisions about replanting or abandoning acres.