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Best to get Crop Insurance Discussions Going Early

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Crop insurance companies and agents across America are scrambling this year in the midst of the worst drought in decades. In the four state area served by Farm Credit Services of Mid-America, and that includes Indiana, there will be many claims this year and only minimal areas not touched by the disaster.

Tom Sloma heads the company’s crop insurance division.

“Probably from our 4-state region we’re looking at northeastern Ohio with the best crops of any,” he told HAT. “Now that may only be average for them and there will spots there that will have claims also. If we look around the Chicago region, that northwestern side of Indiana we have some pretty decent crops with some rainfalls that came off the lakes. But overall throughout our four states we’re looking at most of the corn fields have the potential or having claims on them.”

Sloma says about 75 percent of the corn and soybean acres in Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee are covered by crop insurance and he said there have been a lot of inquiries from farmers who have the remaining 25 percent. If they want to add insurance next year sign-up is March 13th, 2013.

Act early is the best advice for those with current coverage who might have a claim.

“So as you’re getting into harvest this season talk with your agent. Soybeans have seemed to have recovered a little bit in some of the areas but we’re going to have a lot of corn claims out there this season. So it’s getting a hold of your agent, get a claim filed so we can get an adjuster to work the claim. December the 10th is the latest we can file a claim for the season, so we’ll obviously know well before that with harvest being earlier in most places what we’re going to have happening.”

Talk to your agent if you intend to do something with a crop other than traditional harvesting, chopping for silage for example. Appraisals are needed in that case. And some farmers will be audited.

“Anybody having over a $200,000 claim per crop per county will have to go through a special review, either one or three years of back history on their records. We’re starting to initiate some of those early before harvest so we can start some of that paperwork.”

Sloma says their over 90 Midwest offices serve as farmer resources so don’t hesitate to call with questions.[audio:https://www.hoosieragtoday.com//wp-content/uploads//2012/08/Tom-Sloma-on-2012-crop-insurance-claims.mp3|titles=Tom Sloma on 2012 crop insurance claims]