Crop insurance is federally funded and it is crucial to adhere to the deadlines and requirements of your crop insurance policy, in order to receive your claim dollars when they are due. These are the top mistakes we see.
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Documents do not have a signature or a date
It is vital that all crop insurance documents are signed and dated promptly. Signatures on FSA paperwork are not valid.
Important Deadlines were missed
Your insurance could be canceled if you miss important dates. With most companies you can sign up for emails or text service to receive reminders about important dates and what you need. See more important deadlines here.
Changes in the entity – all insurance companies need to know when your farming operation has changed. Crop insurance is tied to the entity that sells your grains. This is the entity you should certify your acres with at FSA. However, this is not an absolute requirement. Some people overlook other changes such as marriage, divorce, and death.
If your crop rotation has changed.
Changing your rotation could have an impact on your premium. Although you don’t need to tell us exactly where your crop is until the acreage reporting deadline, it’s a good idea for your agent to discuss your plans for the year.
If the FSA documentation is missing, a claims adjuster will first look at your FSA certification to verify the information necessary to pay claims. It helps if the information matches. FSA should send you your report, or you can include it with your acreage report. It is a common way to verify errors.
Your schedule is ready for you to review – Once you have completed your acreage report, you will receive a schedule with insurance. Double-check this document as soon as you can, this is another way to find errors.
Don’t wait too long to correct errors. It is possible for your indemnity to be denied if an error in acreage reporting is not detected until the claim time, or later, depending on the circumstances.
You may not have reported all your acres. Crop insurance requires you to report all your crop acres that are insured on your acreage report. This includes uninsurable, late-planted, prevent-plant, double-crop, and other areas. Learn more about crop acreage reporting here.
Don’t wait too long to submit your production. Knowing the final production will help you determine if you have a claim. In case of a claim, it is crucial to give your figures to your agent soon after harvest.
Commingling production – It is recommended that you keep track and report your production the same way as your acres. You can commingle production if you have qualified for enterprise units. You could face penalty yields in your historical databases if you don’t indicate commingled output. You can’t combine the farms of optional units. If you do, penalty yields will be assessed. You must keep a log of the way your bushels were separated for each farm when you place your crop in a storage container.
You have forgotten to include the production type in your form. The production type is what indicates how you established your production for the year (ie. If it was sold, fed or combined monitor records.
Not telling your agent about crop problems is a mistake. Claims can be submitted online, by email, phone, text or written notice. Insurance money can be denied for delayed claims or notices. Learn more about how to file a claim here.
Yield claims must be submitted generally no later than 15 working days after the end date of the insurance period. This could be either when the crop has been harvested or December 10, whichever comes first.
The claims process with an adjuster should be started within 60 days of the end of the insurance period. Failure to do this will result in a delayed claim. After the final price is established, revenue claims must be submitted within 45 days.
Waiting until Harvest is Complete – Claims must be submitted by crop/by county and by unit. Waiting until your entire harvest is in can cause you to miss a claim deadline for one of your units or crops. If you have a low yielding farm, it is better to call your insurance company right away to discuss options. It is much easier to withdraw a claim than to submit a late claim. It is not a crime to withdraw a claim after you have submitted it.
You must initiate the claim process – Agents cannot submit claims without your permission. The policyholder must initiate claims.