The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) authorizes the lawful admission of temporary, nonimmigrant workers (H-2A workers) to perform agricultural labor or services of a temporary or seasonal nature. The Department of Labor’s regulations governing the H-2A Program also apply to the employment of U.S. workers by an employer of H-2A workers in any work included in the ET Approved job order or in any agricultural work performed by the H-2A workers during the period of the job order. Such U.S. workers are engaged in corresponding employment.
The bond form references federal laws in regards to wages. If the Principal fails to obey federal law referenced in the bond form a claim will occur. Below are some duties the principal must adhere to prevent a bond claim:
"The employer understands that it must offer, recruit at, and
pay a wage that is at least the highest of the Adverse Effect Wage Rate (AEWR)
in effect at the time the job order is placed, a prevailing wage rate, the
agreed-upon collective bargaining wage (CBA), the Federal minimum wage, or the
State minimum wage. Furthermore, the employer understands that if the
applicable AEWR or prevailing wage is adjusted during the contract period, and
that new rate is higher than the highest of the AEWR, the prevailing wage, the
CBA, the Federal minimum wage, or the State minimum wage, the employer will
increase the pay of all employees in the same occupation to at least the higher
rate no later than the effective date of the adjustment. If the new AEWR or
prevailing wage is lower than the rate guaranteed on the job order, the
employer must continue to pay at least the rate guaranteed on the job order. "
The Surety Bond amounts have changed and increased as of 2023. There is a new bond form required. Surety Bonds must be accompanied by a signed ETA-9142a Appendix B. The new bond amount is calculated by taking the bas bond rate and multiplying the current average AEWR divided by $9.25.
Number of H-2A
Workers to be Employed
Adjusted Bond Amount
(base amount x average AEWR/$9.25)
Less than 25 workers $9,178.38 = $5,000 x $16.98/$9.25
25 to 49 workers $18,356.76 = $10,000 x $16.98/$9.25
50 to 74 workers $36,713.51= $20,000 x $16.98/$9.25
75 to 99 workers $91,783.78 = $50,000 x $16.98/$9.25
100 or 149 workers $137,675.68 = $75,000 x $16.98/$9.25
150 or more workers $137,675.68 + $67,920 (80 hours × 50 workers ×
Average AEWR) multiplied by each additional set
of 50 H-2A workers over 100
An H-2ALC is a person who meets the definition of an “employer” under the H-2A Program and does not otherwise qualify as a fixed-site employer or an agricultural association (or an employee of a fixed site employer or agricultural association) and who is engaged in any one of the following activities in regards to any worker subject to the H-2A regulations: recruiting, soliciting, hiring, employing, furnishing, housing, or transporting.
While H-2A does not require labor contractors to register as such with the Department, any person who is subject to MSPA as a Farm Labor Contractor (FLC) must register with the Department and be issued an FLC Certificate of Registration prior to engaging in any farm labor contracting activity. In their H2A applications, H-2ALCs required to be registered under MSPA are obligated to provide their respective MSPA FLC Certificate of Registration number and to identify the farm labor contracting activities they are authorized to perform.
In addition to meeting the same assurances and obligations as any other H-2A employer, H-2ALCs must fulfill the following requirements:
• list the name and location of each fixed-site agricultural business to which they expect to provide H-2A workers, the dates of each employment opportunity, and a description of the crops and activities the workers are expected to perform at each area of intended employment;
• Submit a copy of each work contract agreement between the H-2ALC and the agricultural business to which they expect to provide workers;
• Provide proof that all housing and transportation if provided or secured by the fixed-site employer complies with applicable safety and health standards; and
• Obtain and submit the original surety bond with the H-2A Application.
Surety Bond: The surety bond must be written to cover liability incurred during the term of the work contract period listed on the H-2A Application and must remain in effect for a period of at least 2 years from the expiration date of the labor certification. H-2ALCs must obtain the surety bond in the following amounts: