Do I have an agricultural tenancy?
If your employer has provided a home for you as part of your employment then this is known as tied accommodation because it is tied to the specific job you do.
If you are a farm worker this type of accommodation is referred to as an agricultural tenancy or an agricultural occupancy.
There are many different type of tenancy agreement and there are different kinds of agricultural tenancy or occupancy each of which give you different rights.
Not all farm workers who live on agricultural land can be agricultural tenants.
If you live on land which you rent and farm yourself then you may well have an agricultural holding and not an agricultural tenancy.
Here are certain conditions in order to be an agricultural tenancy:
You must live in a self-contained home. You will not have an agricultural tenancy if you share a house with your landlord or you don`t have control over who enters the accommodation (for example because your landlord genuinely needs to enter the property without your permission).
Your employer must own the home you live in or have arranged for you to live there so that you can do your work. If you are employed by the Government, the royal family, a local council, the Forestry Commission or a housing association you will not have an agricultural tenancy. However you may have separate housing rights through the law or rights set out in your contract of employment.
The job you do must meet certain criteria.
Conditions to be an agricultural worker:
- work for 35 hours or more in a week – unless you have a permit to work shorter hours as a result of an industrial injury;
- work for at least some of the time on maintaining crops, livestock, forestry or tractors and other equipment (market gardens and plant nurseries are also included);
- have been employed in agriculture for at least 91 weeks of the last 104 - this includes time from previous employment as well as paid holiday and sick leave.
You need not have been employed by the same employer or worked on the same farm to meet this requirement.
There are other situations where you may have an agricultural tenancy but if you work on a fish farm or keep animals for sport you are not considered to be an agricultural worker for these purposes.