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John Shea, 202-690-0437
Doug Hagel, 406-657-6447

RMA PROVIDES GUIDANCE, CLARIFIES PREVENTED PLANTING PROVISIONS

WASHINGTON, Mar 11, 2010 - USDA's Risk Management Agency (RMA) recently published two Final Agency Determinations (FAD) dealing with the issue of Prevented Planting, whose coverage was added to the common crop insurance basic policy provisions in the 1990's.

FAD-110 addresses acreage which in normal weather patterns is wet throughout the final and late planting periods, and would be acreage only available to plant in abnormally dry conditions. RMA reiterates published policy and procedure relative to this type of acreage by providing a distinction between the insurability of the acreage versus the availability of a particular coverage. To be covered for prevented planting, the acreage must be physically available for planting during the RMA published final and late planting period.

FAD-112 clarifies which standards are to be applied to identify whether a cause of loss that "could" prevent planting is evident at the time a producer requests to increase their prevented planting coverage level. RMA reiterates and clarifies whether published policy and procedure requires an approved insurance provider to determine if a single cause of loss or multiple events are to be considered when determining a producer's eligibility for additional prevented planting coverage. The crop insurance provisions state that the prevented planting coverage level cannot be increased if a single cause of loss is evident, or multiple causes of loss are evident, prior to the time the producer requests the increased prevented planting coverage level, and such cause or causes will or could prevent planting.

According to RMA's Billings Regional Office Director Doug Hagel, a producer is therefore prohibited from increasing their prevented planting coverage level if "a single cause of loss" occurs prior to the date the producer elected such coverage that would prevent planting from taking place throughout the final and late planting period.

Hagel also reminds producers that it is their responsibility to establish that any loss of production or value occurred during the insurance period, and that the loss of production or value was directly caused by one or more of the insured causes specified in the crop provisions.

Producers should be prepared to establish the cause of loss and the planting history on acreage they again claim as prevented planting in 2010.

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