Legal and Compliance Issues
Farm business owners and managers should have a basic understanding of the various laws that apply to agricultural labor.
This section is intended as a guide for agricultural employers only, not an official presentation or interpretation of any of the laws and regulations discussed within.
Readers should recognize that new laws are created, other laws amended, and that State laws vary.
Please consult an attorney for legal advice.
Maintaining accurate records as part of the farm business includes information related to employees and personnel actions.
Under Vermont law, an employer is required to maintain, for two years, true and accurate records of the hours worked by each employee and of the wages paid to each employee. Furthermore, upon demand, an employer is also required to furnish to the Commissioner of the Department of Labor a sworn statement of these records and allow the Commissioner, their deputy or authorized agent to conduct an inspection of the records at any reasonable time.
The U.S. Department of Labor has information on Recordkeeping & Reporting [http://www.dol.gov/dol/topic/workhours/hoursrecordkeeping.htm]
For more information on Personnel Records, go to Ag Help Wanted: Guidelines for Managing Agricultural Labor [http://agecon.uwyo.edu/aglabor/FrameOnlineReferences.htm] and link to the 'Chapter page,' then Personnel Records. A Record Retention Summary Guide is also available, by linking to 'Links in Text' and the record retention link on page 65.
From USDA, the Summary of Federal Laws and Regulations Affecting Agricultural Employers, 2000 is available to order or download at www.ers.usda.gov/Publications/ah719. This publication summarizes Federal laws and regulations affecting farmworkers.
Handy Reference Guide to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) [http://www.dol.gov/esa/regs/compliance/whd/hrg.htm]
Last modified January 10 2006 11:23 AM