Child Labor Laws 101
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Article 20190731 Child Labor Laws 101



While schools are out for the summer, there are a lot of school children willing to work their break off and make some more money for themselves in their spare time, however, employers need to stay updated with the latest information and trends on the labor posters to keep them from erring and being heavily penalized. Employers should understand during this period that although there are many school students willing to work, hiring them is a huge responsibility, not only because of their youthful exuberance and high risk of making the wrong set of decisions, but also because of the state and federal child labor laws.

Before proceeding to hire any of the youngsters out there, it is a good idea to first read up and stay updated with the latest child labor laws and also go a step further by training your managers on how to remain in compliance with the laws. Doing this will enable you to stay away from the potential downfalls associated with instances such as children working overtime to earn more money.

The Fair Labor Standard Act (FLSA) is a federal law. This law guides employers on how to relate with different age groups of youth who are willing to work off their free time and the fines employers risk when they violate the law. The FLSA protects children primarily from being exploited by employers who may wish to employ them to sell or produce goods.

As an employer, it is important that you know the types of occupations children are allowed to work in and what duties they are allowed to take in any establishment. It is also recommended that you follow strictly the rules and restrictions set for summer vacation as they are different from when school is in session.

Many states also have their own labor laws with different stipulations aimed at protecting children from being exploited and extorted.

For ages 13 Years Old and Under

Employers are across board not permitted to employ the services of children who are 13 years old or younger. However, there may be some exceptions to this rule as businesses in the line of agriculture, wreath making, newspaper publishers or entertainment businesses may hire children of 13 or younger. However, make sure to read up in the latest FLSA child labor exceptions to avoid huge regulatory penalties.

For ages 14 to 15 Years old

Children between ages 14 and 15 can be hired by employers. However, employers should demand ae certificate to prove this. This will protect them from violating the FLSA laws. When school is in session, minors can only work no more than 3 hours daily and no more than 18 hours weekly. They also cannot work before 7 a.m. and not after 7 p.m. Summer vacation period however relaxes this law, allowing them to work as much as 40 hours a week during the hours of 7 a.m. and 9 p.m.

For ages 16 to 17 years old

16 and 17-year-olds can be hired for any job so long it doesn’t involve fire, chemicals, sharp objects, explosives, or any other material classified as hazardous. They are allowed to work no more than 3 hours daily, maximum of 18 hours weekly, and not before 7 a.m. and after 7 p.m. During summer, relaxed rules apply of not more than 40 hours a week between the hours of 7 a.m. and 9 p.m.

To learn more about violations, fines and penalties associated with erring these rules, visit

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Labor Law Compliance Center, LLC
23855 Gosling Rd
Spring, TX 77389
T:(800) 801-0597
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