Employing Young People in the Workforce
by JamieD, Former Moderator
- Created: August 31, 2009, 12:26 pm
- Updated: February 17, 2011, 6:04 pm
My college applications could really use more work experience.
My summer vacation fund is way too low- I need more cash!
That summer internship would definitely help prepare me for business school.
Each year June rolls around and millions of teenagers start looking for the perfect summer job. Before you know it, it's September and the search begins for a job that fits into your school schedule. Every year, small businesses play a major role in the employment young people in part-time jobs. It is important for them to understand and abide by the state and federal laws that govern youth employment.
Child labor laws are federally established through the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The FLSA governs working standards on minimum wage, overtime pay, and recordkeeping in addition to restrictions on youth employment. Employers of young people must pay particular attention to how long each employee can work, what types of jobs they are allowed to do, and how to keep their environment safe.
Note: Employees 13 Years Old and younger are not covered by the FLSA. 14 is the minimum age covered for non-agricultural employees.
14 and 15 Year Olds can work between 7am and 7pm outside of school hours. An exception occurs between June 1st and Labor Day when they are allowed to work until 9pm. During this time they can work no more than 3 hours on school days and 8 hours on non-school days. School weeks permit up to 18 hours of work and non-school weeks permit 40 hours.
16 Year Olds and Older are not restricted by hours. They are permitted to work any day, time, and for any number of hours they choose.
Due to the nature of the work, different rules apply to farms.
The Department of Labor's FLSA Advisor has more information on hour restrictions.
The minimum age requirements include several exceptions for youths aged 13 years old and younger to allow for child employment. These youngsters can delivery newspapers,babysit, and work as an actor or performer in films, TV, radio, and theater. In addition to these jobs,children can work for parents who own or operate a business or farm.
At 14 and 15 Years old the spectrum of jobs available to youths significantly expands. Offices, grocery and retail stores,restaurants, movie theaters, and amusement parks are all considered appropriate work environments for this age group. A complete list of permitted and prohibited job types for this age group are available through the FLSA Advisor.
No parent or employer is permitted to employ any child under the age of 16 in a hazardous occupation as set by the Secretary of Labor.
At 16 and 17 Years oldteenagers can be employed in any non-hazardous job or occupation. There are exceptions in certain cases of apprentice/student-learner programs of several hazardous occupations.
At 18 Years old the FLSA no longer applies and individuals can work any job, hazardous or non-hazardous, for the hours they want.
Safety and Health Standards
The Department of Labor is dedicated to educating employers and young employees on the importance of job safety. Several resources are available for employers to educate themselves and establish a safe environment for youth employees.
- DOL Youth & Labor Safety Guide
- Young Worker Safety and Health Guide
- Occupational Safety and Health Administration
Each state has its own set of laws that govern child labor standards. Some states have stricter laws to regulate the number of hours a teenager can work or more relaxed laws on the type of job they can perform.
Regardless of any differences between federal and state laws, the applicable rule is the one that provides the most protection for the child. To learn about the state child employment laws that apply to you, select your state.
The DOL State Labor Law Guide provides more information on state laws that regulate youth employment issues such as entertainment occupations, agricultural jobs, and school attendance requirements.
- Child Labor Rules Advisor
- Youth Rules!
- Young Entrepreneurs - Advice for Starting a Business as a Minor
- Teen Workers - Small Business Questions??
- What Does My State Say?
Message Edited by JamieD on 09-01-2009 12:48 PM
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