In addition to losses in yield, quality and revenue from crops planted, most federally-reinsured crop insurance policies cover losses resulting from “prevented planting.”
The prevented planting, or PP, coverage has its own set of rules and guidelines that can easily be read by crop insurance companies as grounds to deny an otherwise valid PP claim. While the coverages afforded under a given crop insurance policy are determined by the individual farmer’s own production history in that county for that crop, and the losses determined largely by his or her own individual yield, PP claims are viewed through a slightly different lens.
The policy definition of “prevented planting” requires that the producer be prevented from planting “due to an insured cause of loss that is general to the surrounding area and that prevents other producers from planting acreage with similar characteristics.” Often, the insurance adjuster fails to take into account the particular characteristics of the acreage prevented from planting, judging it instead by other planted acreage that does not share the same or “similar characteristics.” Similar characteristics are defined by Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (FCIC) and Risk Management Agency (RMA) as “comparable geography, topography, soil types, the same weather conditions and exposure.” Specifically, excluded from these “similar characteristics” are “farm management decisions,” which include the use no-till farming practices versus conventional till.
Navigating the many nuanced rules of the FCIC and RMA can be difficult, and matching wits with a crop insurance adjuster or claims specialist can be difficult when he or she has the handbook and you don’t. (Remember the first time you played poker or Monopoly?) Give your prevented planting claim the best chance of success by seeking a free initial consultation with attorney Wendell Hoskins II.
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