Liability & Risk Management
Protect your market.
Farmers markets face legal risks from a wide variety of sources. Knowing the source and general nature of those risks is the first step to successfully managing them. The Farmers Market Legal Risks section covers many of the most relevant legal concerns facing markets, while pointing to the most appropriate risk management tools.
Once risks are identified, the question is: how do you best manage these risks? This section highlights four primary strategies that resolve a range of risks that farmers markets experience: governance, insurance, rules and procedures, and recordkeeping. Considering each of these strategies will help any market develop strength and resilience.
Learn more about how these common risks materialize and what a farmers market can do about them.
Injuries to People & Damage to Property
Equipment, weather, and traffic can all cause accidents at farmers markets. Learn about common risks that lead to injuries and property damage and how markets can manage those risks.Read more »
Some common farmers market practices increase the risk of exposure to food-borne illness. Learn how to limit liability and prevent food-borne illness at your farmers market.Read more »
Vendors are central to farmers markets, but managing interpersonal relationships can be difficult. Learn about potential legal claims a vendor may have against a market and how to reduce risks.Read more »
Relationship to Host Site
Most farmers markets do not own the property where they operate. Learn how to manage risks associated with leasing property or relying on verbal agreements to use the property.Read more »
Employment and Labor Law Risks
Farmers markets often rely on the help of volunteers, contractors, and staff. Learn about different worker classifications and the market’s legal obligations regarding employment.Read more »
Ensure that people with a range of abilities can participate in farmers markets. Learn how to structure a farmers market to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).Read more »
Risk Management Tools
Build your farmers market’s legal resilience by considering the following risk management tools.
Choosing the best business structure for your market and backing up that choice with strong governance documents can both solve risky situations and prevent them from ever occurring.Read more »
Insurance is a vital risk management strategy. The right insurance policy can help a farmers market defend itself in court and provides a source of funds if the market is found liable for an event.Read more »
Market Rules & Procedures
Create market rules and procedures that promote a safe market environment and clear vendor expectations to prevent or minimize conflict down the road.Read more »
Solid records reinforce all of a farmers market’s risk management strategies by creating a paper trail that supports accountability and can serve as legal evidence.Read more »