Crops > Cost & Return > Yields

Delayed and Prevented Planting Provisions

File A1-57
Updated February, 2011

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Use this decision tool to evaluate delayed planting, replanting and prevented planting alternatives.

Most crop producers know that to achieve optimum yields it is important to plant early. Once the danger of a frost is past, the more days the crop has to grow and mature the higher the yield. However, in some years cold weather or frequent rains may prevent tillage and planting from being completed as early as desired. When this happens some adjustments may be made to the amount of coverage provided by Multiple Peril Crop Insurance (MPCI) as well as other types of crop insurance. These adjustments are subject to revision each year by the Risk Management Agency (RMA) and crop insurance vendors.

The first situation that can arise is when the original crop cannot be planted on time. In this case the producer has three choices:

  • Go ahead and plant the original crop, even though yields may be reduced.
  • Plant an alternative crop.
  • Abandon the acres, and plant a cover crop.

A second situation arises when the original crop is planted, but is severely damaged by frost, hail, wind, fl oods or other natural occurrences. In this case several options are available:

  • Leave the damaged crop as it is.
  • Replant the same crop.
  • Plant a different crop.
  • Abandon the acres, and plant a cover crop. Each of these situations has different consequences for crop insurance coverage.

Late Planting Coverage

MPCI policies include a 25-day late planting period. In Iowa, this period begins on the day after the fi nal planting date, that is, June 1 for corn and June 16 for soybeans. These dates may be different in other states and for other crops. Any acres planted during this period receive a lower yield or revenue guarantee than those acres planted earlier. The coverage is reduced 1 percent per day for each of the next 25 days.

  Corn Soybeans
Final planting date May 31 June 15
Late planting period June 1-25 June 16-July 10


Insured acres not planted until after the end of the late planting period (June 25 for corn and July 10 for soybeans) due to insurable causes can still be insured at the prevented planting coverage level chosen in the original policy.

This reduction applies to both the yield guarantee under Yield Protection (YP) policies, or the revenue guarantee under Revenue Protection (RP) policies.

It is important to remember that the yield guarantees and actual yields on late planted crops are averaged together with those of all the timely planted acres in the same insurance unit rather than considered separately. Example 1 shows how the fi nal guarantee for a mixture of timely planted and late planted acres is determined.

Table 1. Late coverage as percent of original coverage

Example 1

Prevented Planting

Policy holders who are prevented from planting some crop acres until after the final planting date may choose to not plant the crop at all and still receive 60 percent of the original guarantee, except under a group protection policy. For an additional premium, prevented planting coverage can be increased to 65 or 70 percent of the original coverage. This choice must be made when the policy is purchased, however. In some years this may be more profitable than planting the crop very late and harvesting only a low yield. No other crop may be planted on these acres, including forage crops to be hayed or grazed. A cover crop can be planted, however. Example 2 illustrates a prevented planting situation.

If a second insurable crop is planted in place of the fi rst crop on or before the end of the late planting period (June 25 for corn in Iowa), coverage for the second crop simply replaces the coverage for the fi rst crop. If the crop is planted after this date, the second crop can still be insured and payment equal to 35 percent of the prevented planting payment on the crop will be received, as well (see Example 2).

Example 2

Minimum Areas

Very small land areas do not qualify for the prevented planting coverage, or for replanting payments. Affected areas must be equal to or greater than 20 acres in size, or 20 percent of the insured acreage that was intended to be planted for units under 100 acres.

Replanting Coverage

If an insured crop is severely damaged due to a natural peril such as hail or frost and is projected to produce less than 90 percent of the guaranteed yield, the producer can receive a payment equal to the projectedprice each year multiplied by the following:

8 bushels for corn
3 bushels for soybeans

The minimum area rules also apply for replanting payments, and the same crop must be planted again. The same production guarantee is still in effect, based on the original planting date. The replant option is not available for catastrophic level coverage (CAT) or group risk policies (GRP or GRIP). Example 3 illustrates how a replant payment for soybeans might occur.

Example 3

Planting a Second Crop

When a crop is damaged late in the planting season, the producer may prefer to plant a different crop in place of the original crop. The area must be released by the insurance carrier, fi rst. The second crop can be insured if it was included in the original policy. If the second crop is not insured, the producer will receive 100 percent of the indemnity payment due on the fi rst crop, based on an adjustor’s estimate of yield loss (see Example 4).

If the second crop is insured, the producer will fi rst receive 35 percent of the loss payment on the fi rst crop. If the second crop does not have a loss, the other 65 percent will be paid after harvest. If a loss claim is fi led on the second crop, however, the producer can choose to take the second crop payment or the remaining 65 percent of the fi rst crop payment, whichever is greater (see Example 4).

For acres rented under a crop share lease, the tenant and the landowner must make the same choice about insuring the second crop.

Agronomic factors such as herbicide programs, yield and fertility considerations for the following year, feed needs for livestock, and long-term crop rotations also need to be given serious consideration when deciding whether or not to plant a different second crop

Example 4

Other Considerations

In any case in which the producer receives only 35 percent of the payment for the first crop, whether planted or not, only 35 percent of the original premium for the policy on those acres will be charged. The yield history on any prevented planting acres for the following year will be calculated as 60 percent of the existing APH yield for that unit.

For revenue insurance policies, all indemnity payments are calculated based on guaranteed and actual revenues rather than bushels. The same coverage reductions apply, though. It is useful to keep a log of how many acres are planted each day and their location, particularly during the late planting period.

Close communication with a trained insurance agent is important when making decisions about replanting or late planting of crops.



William Edwards, retired economist. Questions?