31 Mar, 2023

2023 Changes in Crop Insurance: Second Chance If You Forget to Identify a SBI

2023-04-04T12:52:39-05:00March 31st, 2023|Agriculture, Crop Insurance, Latest News|

How did I forget? Back in August 2022 the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (FCIC) released revisions to the Rainfall Index Common Policy, Basic Provisions which became effective on January 1, 2023.  The changes included revising certain definitions to match those of the Common Crop Insurance Policy and adding a 30-day deadline to appeal a determination of good farming practice. Furthermore, the FCIC added a provision which would allow [...]

17 Oct, 2022

The Long Arm of the Law: Investigating Crop Insurance Fraud

2022-10-17T15:21:49-05:00October 17th, 2022|Agriculture, Criminal Conduct, Crop Insurance, Farm Management, Fraud, Insurance coverage, Latest News, Midwest Agricultural Law|

The long arms of the USDA Risk Management Agency (RMA) recently caught a Nebraska man for making false statements in the collection of a sizeable crop insurance claim. The end result was a sentence of 16 weekends of jail time, a $100 special assessment, a $30,000 fine and the kicker of $1,000,000 in restitution. The sentence was for a 2015 crop insurance claim with the investigation starting after the man [...]

22 Mar, 2021

Vacating Crop Insurance Arbitration Ruling: Is it 3 Months or 1 Year?

2021-04-06T14:02:59-05:00March 22nd, 2021|Arbitration, Crop Insurance, Midwest Agricultural Law|

Which is it? Admittedly I keep going back to the well.  Maybe it is because the rules and procedure for arbitrating a crop insurance claim are too complicated.  Or maybe it is a dead horse and I need to get past feeling the Nebraska Supreme Court improperly ruled against my client in an arbitration claim in 2017. In that case, Karo v. NAU, an arbitrator ruled against the [...]

25 Nov, 2020

Enigma Wrapped in a Riddle: Federal Arbitration Act Interplay with Crop Insurance Disputes

2020-11-25T16:28:32-06:00November 25th, 2020|Arbitration, Crop Insurance, Midwest Agricultural Law|

Around this time last year, the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals found that an arbitrator did not exceed his authority when a dispute over the interpretation of a crop insurance policy provision arose after the arbitration proceedings.  Balvin v. Rain and Haill, LLC. Why is this important? It is important because in 2015, the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation ("FCIC") issued Final Agency Determination ("FAD") 230* which stated the following: A [...]

30 Oct, 2020

Overturning a Crop Insurance Arbitration: The Struggle is Real

2020-11-03T14:49:14-06:00October 30th, 2020|Arbitration, Crop Damage Claims, Crop Insurance, Midwest Agricultural Law|

Ask anybody who has attempted to overturn an arbitrator's award in a crop insurance arbitration; the struggle is real even when the arbitrator is dead wrong. Crop insurance arbitration is held to the standards of the Federal Arbitration Act (the "Act").  The Act strictly prohibits overturning an arbitration award unless "the arbitrators exceeded their powers, or so imperfectly executed them that a mutual final, and definite award upon the subject [...]

30 Sep, 2020

Protecting Your Crop Hail Claim: Dangers of the Roadside Adjustment

2020-09-30T14:26:05-05:00September 30th, 2020|Crop Insurance, Midwest Agricultural Law|

Hail damage to corn field near Hastings, Nebraska Every year farmers face multiple weather events that can instantly undo the hard work of planting and maintaining a crop.  Widespread drought and flooding can wipe out entire crops across a large area.  On the other hand, hail and wind storm damage may be extremely variable.  Notwithstanding the recent derecho event, a hail or wind storm might affect one farmer [...]

15 Sep, 2016

Not So Fast: RMA Continues to Scrutinize New Producer Crop Status

2019-03-12T09:24:08-05:00September 15th, 2016|Construction Contractor Advisor, Crop Insurance, Farm Management, Government Regulations, Midwest Agricultural Law|

If you have received a Notice of Overpayment and Removal of New Producer Status from your crop insurance company, you are not alone.  In 2012 the Risk Management Agency started auditing crop insurance applications wherein the insured had requested "New Producer" status.  The effects of the audit have come to fruition in the last few years. The notices generally demand immediate payment of any indemnity paid pursuant to the benefits [...]

17 May, 2016

North Dakota Farmer’s 4 Year Sentence for Insurance Fraud Upheld

2018-04-23T18:22:20-05:00May 17th, 2016|Construction Contractor Advisor, Crop Insurance, Midwest Agricultural Law|

Such is the life of a farmer.   Even in times of a good crop, the potential insurance claim may be more valuable than the crop itself.  That may have been the case for Aaron Johnson of Norwood, North Dakota, who in 2014 received a 4 year sentence for receiving crop insurance payments on a potato crop he purposely damaged. According to court records, Johnson had his hired man spray [...]

23 Dec, 2015

Insuring Additional Acres? The Number of Acres Added May Affect Your Coverage

2018-04-23T18:22:20-05:00December 23rd, 2015|Construction Contractor Advisor, Crop Insurance, Farm Management, Government Regulations, Midwest Agricultural Law|

Added Land: Insurance Options Ahead   Farm land does not change hands very often but when it does the acquiring operator should keep in mind the rules which may affect the operator's crop insurance benefits covering the newly added land. Failing to understand and abide by the Risk Management Association's (RMA) rules can cost an operator the maximum guaranteed yields and dramatically reduce the indemnity available under the [...]

13 Nov, 2015

Crop Insurance Claim Denied? Steps to Take Before Weathering the Arbitration Storm

2018-04-23T18:22:20-05:00November 13th, 2015|Construction Contractor Advisor, Crop Damage Claims, Crop Insurance, Farm Management, Government Regulations, Midwest Agricultural Law|

  Every year, certain portions of the Midwest get pounded by bad weather causing bad yields or outright crop loss.  This year, several states encountered above average rainfall preventing several million acres from being planted.  At one point this summer, Missouri alone had approximately 4 million acres of un-planted corn and soybean acres.   During times of devastating weather, many producers rely on their crop insurance policies to mitigate crop [...]

30 Jul, 2015

Crop Insurance Deadline: Missouri AG Tries to Buy Time for Flooded Farmers

2018-04-23T18:22:20-05:00July 30th, 2015|Construction Contractor Advisor, Crop Insurance, Midwest Agricultural Law|

Too wet to plant   Earlier this month, Chuck Koster, Attorney General for Missouri, filed a lawsuit against Tom Vilsack, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture to extend the deadline for filing  planted acreage reports.  The USDA requires most farmers in Missouri to report their planted acres by July 15 in order to secure coverage under the farmers' crop insurance policies.  The USDA allows farmers a 5 day grace period [...]

25 Jun, 2014

Mother May I? Always Get Permission When Deciding Whether or Not to Replant

2018-04-23T18:22:21-05:00June 25th, 2014|Construction Contractor Advisor, Crop Damage Claims, Crop Insurance, Farm Management, Midwest Agricultural Law|

Approaching Storm Every spring and early summer, heavy rains, hail, and tornadoes force Midwest farmers into a game of "Crop Insurance Mother May I" regarding whether they will replant damaged crops.  For crop insurance purposes, permission is almost always necessary when deciding whether to destroy and replant the damaged crop or destroy the damaged crop and plant a new crop. When facing a replant decision remember the following: "When a crop is damaged and it [...]

12 Mar, 2014

Crop Insurance Agents: No Rebates Allowed

2018-04-23T18:22:21-05:00March 12th, 2014|Construction Contractor Advisor, Crop Insurance, Government Regulations, Midwest Agricultural Law|

Incentives work.  Trust me, I use incentives all the time to get my three year old to sit still, eat his dinner, and stop asking me "why?"  So why don't you ever see crop insurance agents incentivizing clients with bargains on premiums? Incentives on crop insurance rates, no matter how small, are not allowed.  In the crop insurance world such incentives are called "rebates" and offering rebates is illegal under the Federal [...]

30 Aug, 2013

RMA Removes “Normal Weather Condition” Requirement for Prevented Planting Eligibility…

2018-04-23T18:22:21-05:00August 30th, 2013|Construction Contractor Advisor, Crop Insurance, Midwest Agricultural Law|

Prairie Pothole Region MapUS Geographic Survey ...for acres found in the Prairie Pothole National Priority Area, which extends to regions of Iowa, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota and South Dakota.  Beginning in 2014, acres planted in the Prairie Pothole region will be eligible for prevented planting payments if those acres were planted in at least one out of the last four years.  The acres are eligible even if one or more of those four years was [...]

13 Jun, 2013

Wet Weather Problems Pt II: Crop Insurance and Your Options

2018-04-23T18:22:21-05:00June 13th, 2013|Construction Contractor Advisor, Crop Insurance, Midwest Agricultural Law|

  To plant or not to plant?  It is a question several farmers are facing this year in those areas of the Midwest where the rain hasn't let up and the rivers have overtopped their banks.  In some areas, the decision has been made for them.  In those areas where the fields are beginning to dry out, farmers are well advised to speak with their crop insurance agent to determine how their decision may [...]

13 Oct, 2012

And in this Corner: Preparing for Crop Insurance Arbitration

2018-04-23T18:22:22-05:00October 13th, 2012|Construction Contractor Advisor, Crop Insurance, Midwest Agricultural Law|

Farmer v. Crop Insurer I was hanging out in Midwesttown, USA the other day and came across a poster advertising an event held at the community center.  The poster read: FIGHT NIGHT! Jimmythe Farmer v. Craig Crop Insurer in a 12 round winner take all bout.  So I headed right over, laid down my money and walked in to a sold out fight.  It was a good fight with both fighters standing toe to toe [...]

2 Sep, 2011

Crop Insurance, the 2012 Farm Bill and Natural Disasters; Preserving the Safety Net

2018-04-23T18:22:24-05:00September 2nd, 2011|Construction Contractor Advisor, Crop Insurance, Government Regulations, Midwest Agricultural Law|

Every time I turn on the Weather Channel it seems like another area of the country has been hit by a natural disaster.  Last week, Hurricane Irene struck the east coast resulting in extensive damage to the area's crop and livestock.  Farmers in the Midwestern states of Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas and Missouri are just beginning to discover the extent of damage to their fields caused by long term flooding of the Missouri River Basin.  Agricultural producers in [...]

22 Jun, 2011

Two More Missouri River Flooding Problems: Grain Contracts & Flood Insurance

2018-04-23T18:22:24-05:00June 22nd, 2011|Construction Contractor Advisor, Crop Insurance, Midwest Agricultural Law|

The producer's farming the approximate 450,000 acres of prime Nebraska and Iowa farmland along the Missouri River have to worry about at least two additional issues other producers may not worry about; obligations under forward grain contracts, and flood insurance coverage.      1)  Forward contracts bind a producer to deliver grain to a buyer at an agreed upon price at a specific time in the future.  Most contracts are not voided by natural disasters, which leaves the [...]

5 May, 2011

Crop Insurance Settlement v. Arbitration in Nebraska

2018-04-23T18:22:25-05:00May 5th, 2011|Construction Contractor Advisor, Crop Insurance, Midwest Agricultural Law|

In Nebraska, the federal arbitration rules will apply even in cases that the farmer believes was settled. The Case: On September, 2010, the Nebraska Supreme Court ruled that two farmers would have to arbitrate their claim with Rural Community Insurance Company (RCIC) despite having an agreed upon settlement with RCIC’s insurance agent.  Kremer v. Rural Community Insurance Company 280 Neb. 591, __ NW2d ___ (2010).  The case started when Robert [...]

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