LINCOLN, NEB. – Nebraska farmers struggling to get crops planted due to recent flooding and ongoing rainfall events may be eligible for a prevented planting payment if crop acres have not been planted due to an insured cause of loss. In Nebraska, the crop insurance final planting date for corn in all counties is May 25 and the final planting date for soybeans is June 10.

“We know many farmers are sorting through options as they deal with flood recovery and the continued rainfall events that have kept them from putting seed in the ground. We’ve identified some options that we hope will be helpful as they evaluate their situation, particularly corn producers who are bumping up against the May 25 deadline,” said Jay Rempe, Nebraska Farm Bureau senior economist.

United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) May 20 crop progress report shows 70 percent of Nebraska’s estimated corn acres and 40 percent of Nebraska’s estimated soybean acres have been planted. In comparison, the 5-year average is 86 percent for corn and 54 percent for soybeans.

“Farmers may be eligible for a prevented planting payment if acres have not been planted due to an insured cause of loss by the final planting date. Prevented planting will provide coverage equal to 55 percent of the original production guarantee in their policy. To qualify for prevented planting they must meet several qualifications,” said Rempe. “Acres must eligible for prevented planting due to an insured cause of loss; the tract must be at least 20 acres or represent 20 percent of the field; prevented planting must be general to the surrounding area; and the acres must have a history of being planted to corn or soybeans.”

According to Rempe, farmers can still plant a crop after the final planting date and receive crop insurance coverage. However, the coverage will be reduced one percent per-day after the planting final date during the late planting period. The late planting period runs until June 14 for corn and July 5 for soybeans. Crop insurance agents must be notified within 72 hours after the final date of the late planting period if acres are left unplanted to be eligible for prevented planting coverage. 

“There are several options for farmers to consider on corn acres that don’t get planted by the May 25 final planting date,” said Rempe.

As noted, acres can still be planted to corn during the late planting period with the crop still being insured, but the coverage will decline by 1 percent each day. Acres planted are not eligible for prevented planting.

Acres could be planted to soybeans or another crops like grain sorghum. Crop insurance would still be available on the crop if coverage has already been purchased for the crop on other acres. Factors which could influence the decision on whether to plant an alternative crop: fertilizer or herbicide applications; crop rotations; potential trade aid; and underlying economics. 

After the late planting period for corn ends June 14, the acres could still be planted to another crop, and a prevented planting payment of 35 percent of corn coverage received, but a premium of 35 percent of the corn premium must be paid. Taking this option also mean the acres will receive a 60 percent yield plug in the Average Production History.

  

Acres can be left unplanted and if eligible receive a prevented planting payment equal to 55 percent of the original production guarantee. These acres can be planted to a cover crop so long as the cover crop is not hayed or grazed prior to November 1 and cannot be harvested for grain or seed at any time. The Average Production History on the acres will not be affected.

“Farmers should contact their crop insurance agent to discuss options before making any decisions on corn acres that don’t get planted before the May 25 deadline,” said Rempe. “It’s also important farmers know that if they take prevented planting, they cannot qualify for the recently announced new round of trade related market facilitation program payments.”


The Nebraska Farm Bureau is a grassroots, state-wide organization dedicated to supporting farm and ranch families and working for the benefit of all Nebraskans through a wide variety of educational, service, and advocacy efforts. More than 61,000 families across Nebraska are Farm Bureau members, working together to achieve rural and urban prosperity as agriculture is a key fuel to Nebraska’s economy. For more information about Nebraska Farm Bureau and agriculture, visit www.nefb.org.