Non-Insured Crop Disaster (NAP) Claims
In the event that your claim for benefits has been denied, our Noninsured Crop Disaster Attorneys can assist you in getting some relief. The Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) is a program established to furnish financial assistance to farmers and providers who grow non-insurable crops. In cases of natural disaster that results in a lower yield or crop losses, or inhibits the planting of crops, you may be eligible for financial assistance. This program is in place to cover farmers when they suffer crop losses that would threaten their ability to continue to run their farms.
The Agriculture and Crop Attorneys on our team represent producers, farmers, and sharecroppers in filing for coverage, filing claims for crop loss, and appealing claim denials. Our NAP appeals attorneys collaborate with your farm or production facility to supply thorough and detailed legal representation. We specialize in working with and also against the USDA for years to protect our clients’ business and livelihood. Employ our experience and expertise for your claims today.
Crops That Are Covered by the NAP
Not every type of crop is covered by the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program, nor is every type of entity. Financial relief to producers can be disbursed to landowners, sharecroppers or tenants who share in the risk of producing an “eligible crop.” Eligible crops are crops that are commercially produced agricultural commodities for that are ineligible for standard crop insurance. Crops that are eligible for the non-insured crop disaster assistance program (NAP) fit any of the the descriptions below:
Crops Grown for Food
This category includes a selection of food items, including grains, fruits and vegetables that are grown for human consumption. These crops must not be insurable.
Crops for Livestock
This group encompasses grain and forage crops, including native forage, which are intended for animal consumption. These crops must also not be insurable.
Crops Grown for Fiber
This category is for crops like cotton and flax, but it excludes trees.
This section includes crops that are grown in a controlled environment, like floriculture and mushrooms. These crops must not be insurable either.
This group is for crops like honey and maple sap. If they can be covered by crop insurance, they will not be eligible.
Sea Plant Crops
This category consists of crops that are grown in water, such as sea oats and sea grass. These crops must not be insurable to qualify.
Crops that are employed in manufacturing or raised as feedstock for renewable biofuel, renewable electricity or biobased products.
Value Loss Crops
This category includes things such as Christmas trees, aquaculture, ornamental nursery, ginseng and turf-grass sod.
Claims for Non-insured Crops: What Defines a Natural Disaster
Any natural disaster that is the basis of a claim because it caused the loss of agricultural crops must take place during the coverage period, before or during harvest, and must directly affect the eligible crop. The coverage period can vary in relation to the type of crop. Here are the Eligible Natural Disasters as defined by the NAP:
Damaging weather can be frost and freezes, droughts, hail, excessive moisture, excessive wind or hurricanes.
Adverse Natural Occurrences
Among the disasters in this category are floods, earthquakes, and in some cases, fires.
Adverse Climate Conditions
This is defined as conditions that are related to damaging weather or adverse natural occurrences, such as excessive heat, plant disease, volcanic smog (VOG) or insect infestation.
Noninsured Crop Coverage Periods
Annual Crops Coverage Period
In general, the coverage period for an annual crop begins at the latest date in which any of these events occur:
30 days after an application for coverage has been made and the applicable service fees have been remitted; or
The date on which the crop is planted (this must not exceed the final planting date).
The coverage period of an annual crop comes to an end on the earliest date of any of these events:
- The final date of the harvest of the crop;
- The usual harvest date for the crop;
- The date on which the crop was abandoned; or
- The date the entire crop acreage is destroyed.
Perennial Crop Coverage Periods
The period for perennial crops, (excluding crops for forage), starts 30 (thirty) calendar days after the application closing date. This period ends on the earliest date of any of the following events:
- 10 (ten) months from the application closing date;
- The date on which the harvest is done;
- The normal harvest date for the crop;
- The date on which the crop was abandoned; or
- The date on which the entire crop acreage was destroyed.
Perennial forage crops, controlled environment crops, specialty crops and value loss crops have different coverage periods. To find out what the coverage periods are for these categories of crops, contact your local Farm Services Agency office.
Our Agriculture Attorneys Can Help Your Farm:
Assisting you in Applying for Coverage
The Non-insured Crop Disaster Claims attorneys on our team can handle coverage applications for producers for a small fee. We are capable of advising and assisting you to figure out the coverage types, premium fees, and deadlines. We can also assist you in determining whether or not you are eligible for Service Fee and Premium Discounts. If you do qualify, the discount may help protect your crops at a reduced rate.
Application closing dates are inflexible. That said, you should contact your FSA state committee to find out what the application closing date is for your category of crop. Remember that various crops have different application closing dates. We can answer many of your questions about whether or not your crop qualifies or how to apply for coverage. Call our agriculture attorneys today.
Filing NAP Claims
Financial assistance to producers is available through a unique claims process. Our lawyers can file your NAP claim with the Farm Service Agency and prepare the documentation that you need to succeed in your claim. Nevertheless, filing a non-insured crop disaster assistance program claim is a time sensitive matter. Your claim needs to be filed with your local FSA office within 15 (fifteen) calendar days of the earliest of the following events:
- The occurrence of a natural disaster;
- The final planting date if planting was inhibited by a natural disaster;
- The date that damage to the crop or loss of production becomes apparent; or
- The normal harvest date.
Those farmers that produce hand-harvested crops and a variety of perishable crops must make their claims within 72 hours of the date a loss becomes apparent. Crops that are subject to this 72-hour rule are listed in the NAP Basic Provisions. Contact our offices immediately after you realize a loss may occur so that we can begin the claim process for you in a timely fashion.
Noninsured Crop Disaster Claim Appeals
Actually, the USDA often denies NAP claims by producers and farmers. In these cases, we have NAP appeals attorneys who can handle your appeal, and bring a thorough and detailed case before the Administrative Judge. Our experience can help reverse a NAP claim denial, and under some circumstances, even get your attorney’s fees and costs reimbursed by the USDA. Such cases are highly time sensitive, so as soon as you are issued a claim denial, contact our offices.