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November 4, 2008    DOL Home > Compliance Assistance > By Law > MSPA   

The Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (MSPA)


The Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (MSPA) provides employment-related protections to migrant and seasonal agricultural workers and is administered and enforced by the Wage and Hour Division of the U.S. Department of Labor's (DOL) Employment Standards Administration.

Every non-exempt farm labor contractor, agricultural employer, and agricultural association must:

  • Disclose the terms and conditions of employment to each migrant worker in writing at the time of recruitment and to each seasonal worker when employment is offered, in writing if requested;
  • Post information about worker protections at the worksite;
  • Pay each worker the wages owed when due and provide each with an itemized statement of earnings and deductions;
  • Ensure that housing, if provided, complies with substantive federal and state safety and health standards;
  • Ensure that each vehicle, if transportation is provided, meets applicable federal and state safety standards and insurance requirements and that each driver be properly licensed;
  • Comply with the terms of any working arrangement made with the workers; and
  • Make and keep payroll records for each employee for three years.

The protections do not apply to individuals who are independent contractors rather than employees. Agricultural workers can have more than one employer at the same time. Each "joint employer" is responsible for all employer obligations under the MSPA, but MSPA does not require the unnecessary duplication of effort. Thus, employer responsibility(ies) may be carried out by only one of the joint employers. However, the failure to provide the required protections will result in joint liability for all joint employers. Farm labor contractors are required to register with DOL.






  • 29 CFR 500.80 - Agricultural employers, farm labor contractors (FLCs), and agricultural associations have recordkeeping and disclosure requirements under the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (MSPA).


  • The Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (MSPA) - Requires farm labor contractors, agricultural employers, and agricultural associations who recruit, solicit, hire, employ, furnish, transport or house agricultural workers, as well as providers of migrant housing, to meet certain minimum requirements in their dealings with migrant and seasonal agricultural workers
  • 29 CFR Part 500 - Regulations implementing the MSPA.



  • Employment Standards Administration (ESA)
    Wage and Hour Division
    200 Constitution Avenue, NW
    Room S-3502
    Washington, DC 20210
    Contact WHD
    Tel: 1-866-4USWAGE (1-866-487-9243)
    TTY: 1-877-889-5627
    Local Offices

  • For questions on other DOL laws,
    please call DOL's Toll-Free Help Line at 1-866-4-USA-DOL. Live assistance is available in English and Spanish, Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Additional service is available in more than 140 languages through a translation service.
    Tel: 1-866-4-USA-DOL
    TTY: 1-877-889-5627

*Pursuant to the U.S. Department of Labor's Confidentiality Protocol for Compliance Assistance Inquiries, information provided by a telephone caller will be kept confidential within the bounds of the law. Compliance assistance inquiries will not trigger an inspection, audit, investigation, etc.

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