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Title 29Subtitle BChapter VSubchapter APart 500 → Subpart A


Title 29: Labor
PART 500—MIGRANT AND SEASONAL AGRICULTURAL WORKER PROTECTION


Subpart A—General Provisions


Contents
§500.0   Introduction.
§500.1   Purpose and scope.
§500.2   Compliance with State laws and regulations.
§500.3   Effective date of the Act; transition period; repeal of the Farm Labor Contractor Registration Act.
§500.4   Effect of prior judgments and final orders obtained under the Farm Labor Contractor Registration Act.
§500.5   Filing of applications, notices and documents.
§500.6   Accuracy of information, statements and data.
§500.7   Investigation authority of the Secretary.
§500.8   Prohibition on interference with Department of Labor officials.
§500.9   Discrimination prohibited.
§500.10   Waiver of rights prohibited.
§500.20   Definitions.

Applicability of the Act: Exemptions

§500.30   Persons not subject to the Act.

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§500.0   Introduction.

(a) The Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (MSPA), hereinafter referred to as MSPA or the Act, repeals and replaces the Farm Labor Contractor Registration Act of 1963, as amended, hereinafter referred to as FLCRA or the Farm Labor Contractor Registration Act. Prior judgments and final orders obtained under FLCRA continue in effect as stated in §500.4.

(b) These regulations include provisions necessitated by the Immigration Reform and Control Act's (IRCA) amendment to the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). IRCA amended MSPA to remove section 106 thereof prohibiting the employment of illegal aliens. Matters concerning certificate actions or the assessment of civil money penalties, for a violation of section 106 of MSPA which occurred prior to June 1, 1987, continue through final administrative determination as stated in §500.147.

[48 FR 36741, Aug. 12, 1983, as amended at 54 FR 13328, Mar. 31, 1989]

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§500.1   Purpose and scope.

(a) Congress stated, in enacting the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act that “[I]t is the purpose of this Act to remove the restraints on commerce caused by activities detrimental to migrant and seasonal agricultural workers; to require farm labor contractors to register under this Act; and to assure necessary protections for migrant and seasonal agricultural workers, agricultural associations, and agricultural employers.” It authorized the Secretary to issue such rules and regulations as are necessary to carry out the Act consistent with the requirements of chapter 5 of title 5, United States Code.

(b) These regulations implement this purpose and policy. The regulations contained in this part are issued in accordance with section 511 of the Act and establish the rules and regulations necessary to carry out the Act.

(c) Any farm labor contractor, as defined in the Act, is required to obtain a Certificate of Registration issued pursuant to the Act from the Department of Labor or from a State agency authorized to issue such certificates on behalf of the Department of Labor. Such a farm labor contractor must ensure that any individual whom he employs to perform any farm labor contracting activities also obtains a Certificate of Registration. The farm labor contractor is responsible, as well, for any violation of the Act or these regulations by any such employee whether or not the employee obtains a certificate. In addition to registering, farm labor contractors must comply with all other applicable provisions of the Act when they recruit, solicit, hire, employ, furnish or transport or, in the case of migrant agricultural workers, provide housing.

(d) Agricultural employers and agricultural associations which are subject to the Act must comply with all of the worker protections which are applicable under the Act to migrant or seasonal agricultural workers whom they recruit, solicit, hire, employ, furnish, or transport or, in the case of migrant agricultural workers, provide housing. The obligations will vary, depending on the types of activities affecting migrant or seasonal agricultural workers. Agricultural employers and agricultural associations and their employees need not obtain Certificates of Registration in order to engage in these activities, even if the workers they obtain are utilized by other persons or on the premises of another.

(e) The Act empowers the Secretary of Labor to enforce the Act, conduct investigations, issue subpenas and, in the case of designated violations of the Act, impose sanctions. As provided in the Act, the Secretary is empowered, among other things, to impose an assessment and to collect a civil money penalty of not more than $2,549 for each violation, to seek a temporary or permanent restraining order in a U.S. District Court, and to seek the imposition of criminal penalties on persons who willfully and knowingly violate the Act or any regulation under the Act. In accordance with the Act and with these regulations, the Secretary may refuse to issue or to renew, or may suspend or revoke a certificate of registration issued to a farm labor contractor or to a person who engages in farm labor contracting as an employee of a farm labor contractor.

(f) The facilities and services of the U.S. Employment Service, including State agencies, authorized by the Wagner-Peyser Act may be denied to any person found by a final determination by an appropriate enforcement agency to have violated any employment-related laws including MSPA when notification of this final determination has been provided to the Job Service by that enforcement agency. See 20 CFR 658.501(a)(4). The facilities and services of the U.S. Employment Service shall be restored immediately upon compliance with 20 CFR 658.502(a)(4).

(g) Subparts A through E set forth the substantive regulations relating to farm labor contractors, agricultural employers and agricultural associations. These subparts cover the applicability of the Act, registration requirements applicable to farm labor contractors, the obligations of persons who hold Certificates of Registration, the worker protections which must be complied with by all who are subject to the Act, and the enforcement authority of the Secretary.

(h) Subpart F sets forth the rules of practice for administrative hearings relating to actions involving Certificates of Registration. It also outlines the procedure to be followed for filing a challenge to a proposed administrative action relating to violations and summarizes the methods provided for collection and recovery of a civil money penalty.

(i)(1) The Act requires that farm labor contractors obtain a certificate of registration from the Department of Labor prior to engaging in farm labor contracting activities. The Act also requires registration by individuals who will perform farm labor contracting activities for a farm labor contractor. Form WH-510 and WH-512 are the applications used to obtain Farm Labor Contractor and Farm Labor Contractor Employee Certificates of Registration. These forms have been approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) under control numbers 1215-0038 (WH-510) and 1215-0037 (WH-512). Forms WH-514 and WH-514a are used when applying for transportation authorization to furnish proof of compliance with vehicle safety requirements. These forms have been jointly cleared by OMB under control number 1215-0036.

(2) The Act further requires disclosure to migrant and seasonal agricultural workers regarding wages, hours and other working conditions and housing when provided to migrant workers. The Department of Labor has developed optional forms for use in making the required disclosure. OMB has approved the following: Worker Information (WH-516) 1215-0145 and Housing Terms and Conditions (WH-521) 1215-0146.

(3) The Act also requires that farm labor contractors, agricultural employers and agricultural associations make, keep, preserve and disclose certain payroll records. Forms WH-501 and WH-501a (Spanish version) are provided to assist in carrying out this requirement. In addition, farm labor contractors who are applying for housing authorization must submit information which identifies the housing to be used along with proof of compliance with housing safety and health requirements. There has been no form developed for this purpose. The Act further requires disclosure by the insurance industry of certain information pertaining to cancellation of vehicle liability insurance policies. The requirements concerning recordkeeping, housing and insurance have been cleared by OMB under control number 1215-0148.

(4) The Act provides that no farm labor contractor shall knowingly employ or utilize the services of aliens not lawfully admitted for permanent residence or who have not been authorized by the Attorney General to accept employment. Form WH-509 is an optional form which may be used to self-certify that the applicant is a citizen of the U.S. This form has been cleared by OMB under control number 1215-0091. (See §500.59(a)(11)).

[48 FR 36741, Aug. 12, 1983; 48 FR 38380, Aug. 23, 1983, as amended at 81 FR 43450, July 1, 2016; 82 FR 5381, Jan. 18, 2017; 83 FR 12, Jan. 2, 2018; 84 FR 218, Jan. 23, 2019; 85 FR 2297, Jan. 15, 2020]

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§500.2   Compliance with State laws and regulations.

The Act and these regulations are intended to supplement State law; compliance with the Act or these regulations shall not excuse any

individual from compliance with appropriate State law or regulation.

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§500.3   Effective date of the Act; transition period; repeal of the Farm Labor Contractor Registration Act.

(a) The provisions of the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act are effective on April 14, 1983, and are codified in 29 U.S.C. 1801 et seq.

(b) The Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act repeals the Farm Labor Contractor Registration Act of 1963, as amended, (7 U.S.C. 2041, et seq.), effective April 14, 1983.

(c) Violations of the Farm Labor Contractor Registration Act occurring prior to April 14, 1983, may be pursued by the Department of Labor after that date.

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§500.4   Effect of prior judgments and final orders obtained under the Farm Labor Contractor Registration Act.

The Secretary may refuse to issue or to renew, or may suspend or revoke, a Certificate of Registration under the Act, if the applicant or holder has failed to pay any court judgment obtained by the Secretary or any other person under the Farm Labor Contractor Registration Act, or has failed to comply with any final order issued by the Secretary under the Farm Labor Contractor Registration Act. The Secretary may deny a Certificate of Registration under the Act to any farm labor contractor who has a judgment outstanding against him, or is subject to a final order assessing a civil money penalty which has not been paid.

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§500.5   Filing of applications, notices and documents.

Unless otherwise prescribed herein, all applications, notices and other documents required or permitted to be filed by these regulations shall be filed in accordance with the provisions of subpart F of the regulations.

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§500.6   Accuracy of information, statements and data.

Information, statements and data submitted in compliance with provisions of the Act or these regulations are subject to title 18, section 1001, of the United States Code, which provides:

Section 1001.   Statements or entries generally.

Whoever, in any matter within the jurisdiction of any department or agency of the United States knowingly and willfully falsifies, conceals or covers up by any trick, scheme, or device a material fact, or makes any false, fictitious or fraudulent statements or representations, or makes or uses any false writing or document knowing the same to contain any false, fictitious or fraudulent statement or entry, shall be fined not more than $10,000 or imprisoned not more than five years, or both.

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§500.7   Investigation authority of the Secretary.

(a) The Secretary, either pursuant to a complaint or otherwise, shall, as may be appropriate, investigate and, in connection therewith, enter and inspect such places (including housing and vehicles) and such records (and make transcriptions thereof), question such persons and gather such information as he deems necessary to determine compliance with the Act, or these regulations.

(b) The Secretary may issue subpenas requiring the attendance and testimony of witnesses or the production of any evidence in connection with such investigations. The Secretary may administer oaths, examine witnesses, and receive evidence. For the purpose of any hearing or investigation provided for in the Act, the Authority contained in sections 9 and 10 of the Federal Trade Commission Act (15 U.S.C. 49, 50), relating to the attendance of witnesses and the production of books, papers, and documents, shall be available to the Secretary. The Secretary shall conduct investigations in a manner which protects the confidentiality of any complainant or other party who provides information to the Secretary in good faith.

(c) Any person may report a violation of the Act or these regulations to the Secretary by advising any local office of the Employment Service of the various States, or any office of the Wage and Hour Division, U.S. Department of Labor, or any other authorized representative of the Administrator. The office or person receiving such a report shall refer it to the appropriate office of the Wage and Hour Division, for the region or area in which the reported violation is alleged to have occurred.

(d) In case of disobedience to a subpena, the Secretary may invoke the aid of a United States District Court which is authorized to issue an order requiring the person to obey such subpena.

[48 FR 36741, Aug. 12, 1983, as amended at 82 FR 2226, Jan. 9, 2017]

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§500.8   Prohibition on interference with Department of Labor officials.

It is a violation of section 512(c) of the Act for any person to unlawfully resist, oppose, impede, intimidate, or interfere with any official of the Department of Labor assigned to perform an investigation, inspection, or law enforcement function pursuant to the Act during the performance of such

duties. (Other Federal statutes which prohibit persons from interfering with a Federal officer in the course of official duties are found at 18 U.S.C. 111 and 18 U.S.C. 1114.)

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§500.9   Discrimination prohibited.

(a) It is a violation of the Act for any person to intimidate, threaten, restrain, coerce, blacklist, discharge, or in any manner discriminate against any migrant or seasonal agricultural worker because such worker has, with just cause:

(1) Filed a complaint with reference to the Act with the Secretary of Labor; or

(2) Instituted or caused to be instituted any proceeding under or related to the Act; or

(3) Testified or is about to testify in any proceeding under or related to the Act; or

(4) Exercised or asserted on behalf of himself or others any right or protection afforded by the Act.

(b) A migrant or seasonal agricultural worker who believes, with just cause, that he has been discriminated against by any person in violation of this section may, no later than 180 days after such violation occurs, file a complaint with the Secretary alleging such discrimination.

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§500.10   Waiver of rights prohibited.

Any agreement by an employee purporting to waive or modify any rights inuring to said person under the Act or these regulations shall be void as contrary to public policy, except that a waiver or modification of rights or obligations hereunder in favor of the Secretary shall be valid for purposes of enforcement of the provisions of the Act or these regulations. This does not prevent agreements to settle private litigation.

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§500.20   Definitions.

For purposes of this part:

(a) Administrator means the Administrator of the Wage and Hour Division, United States Department of Labor, and such authorized representatives as may be designated by the Administrator to perform any of the functions of the Administrator under this part.

(b) Administrative Law Judge means a person appointed as provided in title 5 U.S.C. and qualified to preside at hearings under 5 U.S.C. 557. Chief Administrative Law Judge means the Chief Administrative Law Judge, United States Department of Labor, 800 K Street, NW., Suite 400, Washington, DC 20001-8002.

(c) Agricultural association means any nonprofit or cooperative association of farmers, growers, or ranchers, incorporated or qualified under applicable State law, which recruits, solicits, hires, employs, furnishes, or transports any migrant or seasonal agricultural worker.

(d) Agricultural employer means any person who owns or operates a farm, ranch, processing establishment, cannery, gin, packing shed or nursery, or who produces or conditions seed, and who either recruits, solicits, hires, employs, furnishes, or transports any migrant or seasonal agricultural worker. Produces seed means the planting, cultivation, growing and harvesting of seeds of agricultural or horticultural commodities. Conditions seed means the in-plant work done after seed production including the drying and aerating of seed.

(e) Agricultural employment means employment in any service or activity included within the provisions of section 3(f) of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (29 U.S.C. 203(f)), or section 3121(g) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954 (26 U.S.C. 3121(g)) and the handling, planting, drying, packing, packaging, processing, freezing, or grading prior to delivery for storage of any agricultural or horticultural commodity in its unmanufactured state.

(f) Convicted means that a final judgment of guilty has been rendered by a court of competent jurisdiction from which no opportunity for appeal remains.

(g) Day-haul operation means the assembly of workers at a pick-up point waiting to be hired and employed, transportation of such workers to agricultural employment, and the return of such workers to a drop-off point on the same day. This term does not include transportation provided by an employer for individuals who are already employees at the time they are picked up nor does it include carpooling arrangements by such employees which are not specifically directed or requested by the employer, farm labor contractor or agent thereof.

(h)(1) The term employ has the meaning given such term under section 3(g) of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (29 U.S.C. 203(g)) for the purposes of implementing the requirements of that Act. As so defined, employ includes to suffer or permit to work.

(2) The term employer is given its meaning as found in the Fair Labor Standards Act. Employer under section 3(d) of that Act includes any person acting directly or indirectly in the interest of an employer in relation to an employee.

(3) The term employee is also given its meaning as found in the Fair Labor Standards Act. Employee under section 3(e) of that Act means any individual employed by an employer.

(4) The definition of the term employ may include consideration of whether or not an independent contractor or employment relationship exists under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Under MSPA, questions will arise whether or not a farm labor contractor engaged by an agricultural employer/association is a bona fide independent contractor or an employee. Questions also arise whether or not the worker is a bona fide independent contractor or an employee of the farm labor contractor and/or the agricultural employer/association. These questions should be resolved in accordance with the factors set out below and the principles articulated by the federal courts in Rutherford Food Corp. v. McComb, 331 U.S. 722 (1947), Real v. Driscoll Strawberry Associates, Inc., 603 F.2d 748 (9th Cir. 1979), Sec'y of Labor, U.S. Dept. of Labor v. Lauritzen, 835 F.2d 1529 (7th Cir. 1987), cert. denied, 488 U.S. 898 (1988); Beliz v. McLeod, 765 F.2d 1317 (5th Cir. 1985), and Castillo v. Givens, 704 F.2d 181 (5th Cir.), cert. denied, 464 U.S. 850 (1983). If it is determined that the farm labor contractor is an employee of the agricultural employer/association, the agricultural workers in the farm labor contractor's crew who perform work for the agricultural employer/association are deemed to be employees of the agricultural employer/association and an inquiry into joint employment is not necessary or appropriate. In determining if the farm labor contractor or worker is an employee or an independent contractor, the ultimate question is the economic reality of the relationship—whether there is economic dependence upon the agricultural employer/association or farm labor contractor, as appropriate. Lauritzen at 1538; Beliz at 1329; Castillo at 192; Real at 756. This determination is based upon an evaluation of all of the circumstances, including the following:

(i) The nature and degree of the putative employer's control as to the manner in which the work is performed;

(ii) The putative employee's opportunity for profit or loss depending upon his/her managerial skill;

(iii) The putative employee's investment in equipment or materials required for the task, or the putative employee's employment of other workers;

(iv) Whether the services rendered by the putative employee require special skill;

(v) The degree of permanency and duration of the working relationship;

(vi) The extent to which the services rendered by the putative employee are an integral part of the putative employer's business.

(5) The definition of the term employ includes the joint employment principles applicable under the Fair Labor Standards Act. The term joint employment means a condition in which a single individual stands in the relation of an employee to two or more persons at the same time. A determination of whether the employment is to be considered joint employment depends upon all the facts in the particular case. If the facts establish that two or more persons are completely disassociated with respect to the employment of a particular employee, a joint employment situation does not exist. When the putative employers share responsibility for activities set out in the following factors or in other relevant facts, this is an indication that the putative employers are not completely disassociated with respect to the employment and that the agricultural worker may be economically dependent on both persons:

(i) If it is determined that a farm labor contractor is an independent contractor, it still must be determined whether or not the employees of the farm labor contractor are also jointly employed by the agricultural employer/association. Joint employment under the Fair Labor Standards Act is joint employment under the MSPA. Such joint employment relationships, which are common in agriculture, have been addressed both in the legislative history and by the courts.

(ii) The legislative history of the Act (H. Rep. No. 97-885, 97th Cong., 2d Sess., 1982) states that the legislative purpose in enacting MSPA was “to reverse the historical pattern of abuse and exploitation of migrant and seasonal farm workers  *  *  *,” which would only be accomplished by “advanc[ing]  *  *  *  a completely new approach” (Rept. at 3). Congress's incorporation of the FLSA term employ was undertaken with the deliberate intent of adopting the FLSA joint employer doctrine as the “central foundation” of MSPA and “the best means by which to insure that the purposes of this MSPA would be fulfilled” (Rept. at 6). Further, Congress intended that the joint employer test under MSPA be the formulation as set forth in Hodgson v. Griffin & Brand of McAllen, Inc. 471 F.2d 235 (5th Cir.), cert. denied, 414 U.S. 819 (1973) (Rept. at 7). In endorsing Griffin & Brand, Congress stated that this formulation should be controlling in situations “where an agricultural employer  *  *  *  asserts that the agricultural workers in question are the sole employees of an independent contractor/crewleader,” and that the “decision makes clear that even if a farm labor contractor is found to be a bona fide independent contractor,  *  *  *  this status does not as a matter of law negate the possibility that an agricultural employer may be a joint employer  *  *  *  of the harvest workers” together with the farm labor contractor. Further, regarding the joint employer doctrine and the Griffin & Brand formulation, Congress stated that “the absence of evidence on any of the criteria listed does not preclude a finding that an agricultural association or agricultural employer was a joint employer along with the crewleader”, and that “it is expected that the special aspects of agricultural employment be kept in mind” when applying the tests and criteria set forth in the case law and legislative history (Rept. at 8).

(iii) In determining whether or not an employment relationship exists between the agricultural employer/association and the agricultural worker, the ultimate question to be determined is the economic reality—whether the worker is so economically dependent upon the agricultural employer/association as to be considered its employee.

(iv) The factors set forth in paragraphs (h)(5)(iv)(A) through (G) of this section are analytical tools to be used in determining the ultimate question of economic dependency. The consideration of each factor, as well as the determination of the ultimate question of economic dependency, is a qualitative rather than quantitative analysis. The factors are not to be applied as a checklist. No one factor will be dispositive of the ultimate question; nor must a majority or particular combination of factors be found for an employment relationship to exist. The analysis as to the existence of an employment relationship is not a strict liability or per se determination under which any agricultural employer/association would be found to be an employer merely by retaining or benefiting from the services of a farm labor contractor. The factors set forth in paragraphs (h)(5)(iv)(A) through (G) of this section are illustrative only and are not intended to be exhaustive; other factors may be significant and, if so, should be considered, depending upon the specific circumstances of the relationship among the parties. How the factors are weighed depends upon all of the facts and circumstances. Among the factors to be considered in determining whether or not an employment relationship exists are:

(A) Whether the agricultural employer/association has the power, either alone or through control of the farm labor contractor to direct, control, or supervise the worker(s) or the work performed (such control may be either direct or indirect, taking into account the nature of the work performed and a reasonable degree of contract performance oversight and coordination with third parties);

(B) Whether the agricultural employer/association has the power, either alone or in addition to another employer, directly or indirectly, to hire or fire, modify the employment conditions, or determine the pay rates or the methods of wage payment for the worker(s);

(C) The degree of permanency and duration of the relationship of the parties, in the context of the agricultural activity at issue;

(D) The extent to which the services rendered by the worker(s) are repetitive, rote tasks requiring skills which are acquired with relatively little training;

(E) Whether the activities performed by the worker(s) are an integral part of the overall business operation of the agricultural employer/association;

(F) Whether the work is performed on the agricultural employer/association's premises, rather than on premises owned or controlled by another business entity; and

(G) Whether the agricultural employer/association undertakes responsibilities in relation to the worker(s) which are commonly performed by employers, such as preparing and/or making payroll records, preparing and/or issuing pay checks, paying FICA taxes, providing workers' compensation insurance, providing field sanitation facilities, housing or transportation, or providing tools and equipment or materials required for the job (taking into account the amount of the investment).

(i) Farm labor contracting activity means recruiting, soliciting, hiring, employing, furnishing, or transporting any migrant or seasonal agricultural worker.

(j) Farm labor contractor means any person—other than an agricultural employer, an agricultural association, or an employee of an agricultural employer or agricultural association—who, for any money or other valuable consideration paid or promised to be paid, performs any farm labor contracting activity.

(k) Farm Labor Contractor Certificate of Registration or Certificate of Registration means the certificate issued by the Administrator which permits a farm labor contractor to engage in farm labor contracting activities.

(l) Farm labor contractor employee who is required to obtain a Certificate of Registration as an employee of a farm labor contractor means a person who performs farm labor contracting activity solely on behalf of a farm labor contractor holding a valid Certificate of Registration and is not an independent farm labor contractor who would be required to register under the Act in his own right.

(m) Farm Labor Contractor Employee Certificate or Farm Labor Contractor Employee Certificate of Registration or Employee Certificate means the certificate issued by the Administrator to an employee of a farm labor contractor authorizing the performance of farm labor contracting activities solely on behalf of such farm labor contractor and not as an independent farm labor contractor who would be required to register in his own right.

(n) Illegal alien means any person who is not lawfully admitted for permanent residence in the United States or who has not been authorized by the Attorney General to accept employment in the United States.

(o) Immediate family includes only:

(1) A spouse;

(2) Children, stepchildren, and foster children;

(3) Parents, stepparents, and foster parents; and

(4) Brothers and sisters.

(p) Migrant agricultural worker means an individual who is employed in agricultural employment of a seasonal or other temporary nature, and who is required to be absent overnight from his permanent place of residence.

(1) Migrant agricultural worker does not include:

(i) Any immediate family member of an agricultural employer or a farm labor contractor; or

(ii) Any temporary nonimmigrant alien who is authorized to work in agricultural employment in the United States under sections 101(a)(15)(H)(ii)(a) and 214(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.

(2) Permanent place of residence, with respect to an individual, means a domicile or permanent home. Permanent place of residence does not include seasonal or temporary housing such as a labor camp. The term permanent place of residence for any nonimmigrant alien is that individual's country of origin.

(q) Person means any individual, partnership, association, joint stock company, trust, cooperative, or corporation.

(r) Seasonal agricultural worker means an individual who is employed in agricultural employment of a seasonal or other temporary nature and is not required to be absent overnight from his permanent place of residence:

(1) When employed on a farm or ranch performing field work related to planting, cultivating, or harvesting operations; or

(2) When employed in canning, packing, ginning, seed conditioning or related research, or processing operations, and transported, or caused to be transported, to or from the place of employment by means of a day-haul operation.

(i) Seasonal agricultural worker does not include:

(A) Any migrant agricultural worker;

(B) Any immediate family member of an agricultural employer or a farm labor contractor; or

(C) Any temporary nonimmigrant alien who is authorized to work in agricultural employment in the United States under sections 101(a)(15)(H)(ii)(a) and 214(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.

(ii) Field work related to planting, cultivating or harvesting operations includes all farming operations on a farm or ranch which are normally required to plant, harvest or produce agricultural or horticultural commodities, including the production of a commodity which normally occurs in the fields of a farm or ranch as opposed to those activities which generally occur in a processing plant or packing shed. A worker engaged in the placing of commodities in a container in the field and on-field loading of trucks and similar transports is included. Nursery, mushroom and similar workers engaged in activities in connection with planting, cultivating or harvesting operations are intended to be covered. An individual operating a machine, such as a picker, or tractor is not included when performing such activity.

(s) On a seasonal or other temporary basis means:

(1) Labor is performed on a seasonal basis where, ordinarily, the employment pertains to or is of the kind exclusively performed at certain seasons or periods of the year and which, from its nature, may not be continuous or carried on throughout the year. A worker who moves from one seasonal activity to another, while employed in agriculture or performing agricultural labor, is employed on a seasonal basis even though he may continue to be employed during a major portion of the year.

(2) A worker is employed on other temporary basis where he is employed for a limited time only or his performance is contemplated for a particular piece of work, usually of short duration. Generally, employment, which is contemplated to continue indefinitely, is not temporary.

(3) On a seasonal or other temporary basis does not include the employment of any foreman or other supervisory employee who is employed by a specific agricultural employer or agricultural association essentially on a year round basis.

(4) On a seasonal or other temporary basis does not include the employment of any worker who is living at his permanent place of residence, when that worker is employed by a specific agricultural employer or agricultural association on essentially a year round basis to perform a variety of tasks for his employer and is not primarily employed to do field work.

(t) Secretary means the Secretary of Labor or the Secretary's authorized representative.

(u)(1) Solicitor of Labor means the Solicitor, United States Department of Labor, and includes attorneys designated by the Solicitor to perform functions of the Solicitor under these regulations.

(2) Associate Solicitor for Fair Labor Standards means the Associate Solicitor, who, among other duties, is in charge of litigation for the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (MSPA), Office of the Solicitor, U.S. Department of Labor, Washington, DC 20210.

(3) Regional Solicitors means the attorneys in charge of the various regional offices of the Office of the Solicitor.

(v) State means any of the States of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Virgin Islands, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, and Guam. State agency means a State agency vested with all powers necessary to cooperate with the U.S.

Department of Labor for purposes of entering into agreements to carry out the Act as provided in section 513 thereof.

(w) Temporary nonimmigrant alien means a person who has a residence in a foreign country which he does not intend to abandon and who comes temporarily to the United States, with approval of the Attorney General, to perform temporary service or labor.

(x) The Wagner-Peyser Act is the Act of June 6, 1933 (48 Stat. 113; codified in 29 U.S.C. 49 et seq.), providing, inter alia, for the establishment of the U.S. Employment Service. Employment Service of the various States means a State agency vested with all powers necessary to cooperate with the U.S. Employment Service under the Wagner-Peyser Act.

(y) The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) as amended by the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA) to effectively control unauthorized immigration to the United States and for other purposes, is set out in 8 U.S.C. 1101 et seq.

[48 FR 36741, Aug. 12, 1983; 48 FR 38374, Aug. 23, 1983, as amended at 54 FR 13329, Mar. 31, 1989; 56 FR 54708, Oct. 22, 1991; 62 FR 11747, Mar. 12, 1997; 82 FR 2227, Jan. 9, 2017]

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Applicability of the Act: Exemptions

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§500.30   Persons not subject to the Act.

(a) Family business exemption. Any individual who engages in a farm labor contracting activity on behalf of a farm, processing establishment, seed conditioning establishment, cannery, gin, packing shed, or nursery, which is owned or operated exclusively by such individual or an immediate family member of such individual, if such activities are performed only for such operation and exclusively by such individual or an immediate family member, but without regard to whether such individual has incorporated or otherwise organized for business purposes.

(b) Small business exemption. Any person, other than a farm labor contractor, for whom the man-days exemption for agricultural labor provided under section 13(a)(6)(A) of the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (29 U.S.C. 213(a)(6)(A)) is applicable. That exemption applies to an agricultural employer who did not, during any calendar quarter of the preceding calendar year, use more man-days of agricultural labor than the limit specified under that statute.

(1) Currently the limit for exemption is 500 man-days.

(2) A man-day means any day during which an employee performs agricultural labor for not less than one (1) hour. Agricultural labor performed by an employer's parent, spouse, child, or other member of his immediate family, i.e., step-children, foster children, step-parents and foster parents, brothers, and sisters is not counted as man-days.

(3) The man-days of agricultural labor rendered in a joint employment relationship are counted toward the man-days of such labor of each employer for purposes of the man-day test of this exemption.

(c) Common carriers. Any common carrier which would be a farm labor contractor solely because the carrier is engaged in the farm labor contracting activity of transporting any migrant or seasonal agricultural worker. A “common carrier” by motor vehicle is one which holds itself out to the general public to engage in transportation of passengers for hire, whether over regular or irregular routes, and which holds a valid certificate of authorization for such purposes from an appropriate local, State or Federal agency.

(d) Labor organizations. Any labor organization, as defined in section 2(5) of the Labor Management Relations Act (29 U.S.C. 152(5)) (without regard to the exclusion of agricultural employees in that Act) or as defined under applicable State labor relations law.

(e) Nonprofit charitable organizations. Any nonprofit charitable organization or public or private nonprofit educational institution.

(f) Local short-term contracting activity. Any person who engages in any farm labor contracting activity solely within a twenty-five mile intrastate radius of such person's permanent place of residence and for not more than thirteen weeks per year.

(1) Twenty-five mile intrastate radius as used in section 4(a)(3)(D) of the Act means that engagement in a farm labor contracting activity may not go beyond a twenty-five mile intrastate geographical radius. Once this limit is transcended, the exemption no longer applies and the person becomes subject to the requirements of the Act. If, for example, a person or his employee solicits workers from a distance greater than twenty-five miles from his permanent residence or from across a State line, then the person has engaged in a named activity outside of the permitted scope of the exemption, and is subject to the requirements of the Act. A person who uses lines of communication (such as U.S. Mail, telephone, or advertising) to recruit, solicit, hire, or furnish workers over a distance greater than twenty-five miles from his permanent residence or from across a State line for agricultural employment is also engaged in a named activity beyond the specified limit of the exemption and is subject to the Act. In the case of a corporation its permanent place of residence for these purposes shall be a single designated location.

(2) For not more than thirteen weeks per year as used in section 4(a)(3)(D) of the Act means that farm labor contracting activities may not be engaged in for more than thirteen weeks in a year. This does not mean, however,

that persons who engage in intrastate and short-range farm labor contracting activities are exempt for the first thirteen weeks of their farm labor contracting activities each year. The number of weeks of contracting activity during the prior year is also a factor. When the limit of weeks for the exemption is exceeded in a calendar year, the person is subject immediately to the Act and is also presumed subject to the Act in the next calendar year, unless it can be shown that the tests of section 4(a)(3)(D) are met.

(g) Custom combine. Any custom combine, hay harvesting, or sheep shearing operation. Custom combine, hay harvesting, and sheep shearing operation means the agricultural services and activities involved in combining grain, harvesting hay and shearing sheep which are provided to a farmer on a contract basis by a person who provides the necessary equipment and labor and who specializes on providing such services and activities.

(h) Custom poultry operations. Any custom poultry harvesting, breeding, debeaking, desexing, or health service operation, provided the employees of the operation are not regularly required to be away from their permanent place of residence other than during their normal working hours.

(i) Seed production exemption. (1) Any person whose principal occupation or business is not agricultural employment, when supplying full-time students or other individuals whose principal occupation is not agricultural employment to detassel, rogue, or otherwise engage in the production of seed and to engage in related and incidental agricultural employment, unless such full-time students or other individuals are required to be away from their permanent place of residence overnight or there are individuals under eighteen years of age who are providing transportation on behalf of such person.

(2) Any person to the extent he is supplied with students or other individuals for agricultural employment in accordance with paragraph (i)(1) of this section by a person who is exempt thereunder.

(j) Shade grown tobacco. (1) Any person whose principal occupation or business is not agricultural employment, when supplying full-time students or other individuals whose principal occupation is not agricultural employment to string or harvest shade grown tobacco and to engage in related and incidental agricultural employment, unless there are individuals under eighteen years of age who are providing transportation on behalf of such person.

(2) Any person to the extent he is supplied with students or other individuals for agricultural employment is accordance with paragraph (j)(1) of this section by a person who is exempt thereunder.

(k) Employees of exempt employers. Any employee of any person described in paragraphs (c) through (j) of this section when performing farm labor contracting activities within the scope of such exemptions and exclusively for such person.

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