Nationwide News: Do you have the right farm coverage?

Buckeye Farm News

“We recommend farmers ask their agents for an insurance review at least once a year,” said Jerry Hillard, associate vice president Farmowner Sales, Nationwide Agribusiness Insurance Company, Des Moines, Iowa. “A lot can change on a farm that could impact your coverage needs, things you may not even think about until it’s too late.”

For instance, liability coverage under your farm policy is intended to provide protection for liabilities incurred from your personal and farming activities. When you branch into other business activities, you may not be covered. For example, a grain farmer who decides to run a corn maze, or a hay farmer who adds some custom farming may need additional coverage.

That’s why it’s so important to keep your insurance agent advised of both current and planned changes in your farm activities.

“It’s also a good idea to have your agent update the values on your policy,” Hillard advised. “With the roller coaster volatility we’ve seen in commodity pricing over the last few years, there is a good chance that your inventory may be either over or under insured.”

Building costs for repairs or new construction also need to be considered, along with any major new purchases. If you’ve bought a new diamond ring for your spouse or a new shotgun for yourself, you’ll want to review your coverages with your agent.

Be sure to let your agent know about any major life changes, like marriage, divorce, death in the immediate family, or new income sources. All of these can alter your succession/estate plans which may need to be adjusted to meet your changing wishes.

The devastating tornadoes that are occurring with increasing frequency throughout the United States in recent years have made the message even more critical. Farmers with adequate insurance coverage are positioned to recover faster and more completely than those who are underinsured.

“Your insurance agent should be a trusted member of your team,” Hillard points out. “The more your agent knows about your operation, the better he or she is able to help protect you, your family, and your farm.”

Contact your local Nationwide agent, call 1-877-OnYourSide, or visit Nationwide’s website for Ohio Farm Bureau members.

Insurance Review Checklist

Nationwide Agribusiness Insurance Company recommends farmers meet with their insurance agent at least annually. These topics may be relevant for your discussion.

Your Home

Additions or improvements

New protective devices (smoke detectors/theft alarms/deadbolt locks)

New heating units (wood burning stove/fireplace insert)

New construction (garages/swimming pools/new fencing)

Household Contents

Major new purchases





Antiques or collectibles


Farm Buildings

Review adequacy of values in light of changes in re-building costs.

New construction since last review

Planned construction in coming year

Additions or improvements to existing buildings

New storage units (bins, silos)

Farm Property

Review adequacy of inventory limits with your agent.

Additions or deletions of inventory (peak season coverage)

Planned new purchases during coming year

Significant changes in grain, livestock or commodity pricing    


Changes in volume of sales or other business activity

New partnerships, joint ventures or other business affiliations

New acreage acquired

New acreage acquisitions planned

Additional business activities begun or planned

Boarding of horses or other animals

Numbers of employees – increases or decreases


Changes in vehicle ownership

New vehicles added

New drivers added

Life Circumstances

Discuss any changes in these areas.



Birth/adoption of children

Death of family members

Retirement/loss of job if employed off farm

Additional sources of income/inheritance

Lynn Snyder 

Lynn Snyder is senior director of communications for Ohio Farm Bureau.

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