29 CFR § 780.330 - Sharecroppers and tenant farmers.

§ 780.330 Sharecroppers and tenant farmers.

(a) The test of coverage for sharecroppers and tenant farmers is the same as that applied under the Act to determine whether any other person is an employee or not. Certain so-called sharecroppers or tenants whose work activities are closely guided by the landowner or his agent are covered. Those individuals called sharecroppers and tenants whose work is closeIy directed and who have no actual discretion in controlling farm operations are in fact employees by another name. True independent-contractor sharecroppers or tenant farmers who actually control their farm operations are not employees, but if they employ other workers they may be responsible as employers under the Act.

(b) In determining whether such individuals are employees or independent contractors, the criteria set forth in §§ 795.100 through 795.110 of this chapter are used.

(c) Where a tenant or sharecropper is found to be an employee, he and any members of his family who work with him on the crop are also to be included in the 500 man-day count of the owner or operator of the farm. Thus, where a sharecropper is an employee and his wife and children help in chopping cotton, all the family members are employees of the farm owner or operator and all their man-days of work are counted.

(d) On the other hand, a sharecropper or tenant who qualifies as a bona fide independent contractor is considered the same as any other employer, and only the man-days of agricultural labor performed by employees of such a sharecropper or tenant are counted toward the man-days used by him. If he does not meet the 500 man-day test, he is not required to pay his employees the minimum wage even though those employees are entitled to the minimum wage when working for a separate employer who met the man-day test.

[34 FR 15794, Oct. 14, 1969, as amended at 89 FR 1741, Jan. 10, 2024]