At the beginning of November, USDA’s Risk Management Agency announced the final harvest crop insurance prices for the 2019 crops — $3.90 per bushel for corn and $9.25 per bushel for soybeans. These are the average futures prices for December CME corn and November CME soybean contracts in the month of October.
These prices and the farm's actual production are likely the final pieces in determining the potential crop insurance indemnity claim for both 2019 corn and soybeans. Most farmers purchase a revenue policy at higher levels of coverage (80% or 85%). Farmers experiencing significant yield losses this fall below their farm’s actual production history should keep good production records and report these to their crop insurance agent immediately upon completion of harvest.
Since corn and soybean yields will vary across farms and many insured farmers use enterprise unit coverage, crop insurance indemnity claims will also vary. Farmers should provide their crop insurance agent with actual production by unit, so they can determine the potential for an indemnity claim. That same information will be used to update the farm’s APH records in determining guarantees and premiums for the 2020 crop.
Keep deadlines in mind
With the delayed planting as well as harvest experienced across the Corn Belt, the USDA Risk Management Agency extended the traditional due date for crop insurance premiums from Sept. 30 to Nov. 30. The accrual of interest on the spring-planted crops will have their premiums due at the applicable termination date or for two months, until Nov. 30. For any premium not paid by one of those deadlines, interest will accrue consistent with the terms of the policy, usually a 15% annual percentage rate.
The deadline for crop production insurance claims on spring planted crops is Dec. 13. Unharvested crops need to be appraised, so contact your crop insurance agent if you have crops still in the field or have questions. For revenue claims, Dec. 15 is the last day to file a claim.
Work with crop insurance agent
Good communications will be critical as harvest wraps up and production evidence is submitted. Consider these seven harvesttime crop insurance reminders in working with your crop insurance agent.
- Report production as soon as harvest is completed to identify potential losses, so your agent can prepare quotes.
- Contact your agent immediately upon discovery of crop losses.
- Before feeding grain to livestock, request bin measurements.
- If you’re going to have a late harvest or unharvested crops, discuss your options.
- The excessive rain might have created crop quality issues in some fields. Discuss those quality concerns or questions on how the policy will handle them.
- Talk to your tax adviser about the impact of loss payments and the year those payments are taxable.
- Pay your premium before the Nov. 30 due date to avoid interest charges.
Johnson is an Iowa State University Extension farm management specialist. He can be reached at email@example.com.