Many Northern Plains farmers are finding the new disaster relief program easy to use with timely payments, but others are navigating hiccups in the program. One challenge in the first phase of Emergency Relief Program deals with payment limits. The payment limits in ERP for each entity or farmer is $125,000 for both specialty and non-specialty crops. If a farmer can certify more than 75 percent of their overall adjusted gross income or AGI comes from farming, the payment limits in the program can increase. Accountants like Phil Thompson in Warren, Minnesota, are helping farmers certify the FSA 510 forms for increased payment limits and it’s getting sticky. Beyond the tax challenges, Groton Ag Partners crop insurance agent Carl Schwab is dealing with other things. “The first challenge we ran into is if farmers had prevent plant claims in 2020, in some cases, loss adjusters put the date of loss in 2019 when the rains started at harvest. Because the date of loss was outside of ERP in 2020 and 2021, it kicked farmers out of the first phase.” For farmers who purchased supplemental or enhanced crop insurance coverage options will have to wait until the second phase of ERP. Two weeks ago, ag accountants met with FSA to clarify questions and update forms, but it’s unclear what steps FSA will take to address the concerns moving forward. “Hopefully more changes will happen to make this clearer, because farmers who need the money worst aren’t getting it.” Farmers with questions on ERP should reach out to their local FSA office. Hear the story.