Youth Labor Standards

Jul 18, 2018 | Payroll

As the end of summer approaches and school begins, it is important to review the youth labor standards.  Youths that worked during the summer and you want to continue to employ may have hours restrictions. The guidelines below will help walk you through the basics.

Ages Under 14:

Youths under the age of 14 may not be employed in non-agricultural occupations covered by the FLSA.  Permissible employment for under 14 year-olds is limited to work exempt from FLSA rules.  This includes, delivering newspapers to consumers, acting, completing minor chores around private homes and casual baby-sitting.

Ages Under 16 years old:

Youths under the age of 16, specifically 14 & 15 years old, have the following rules:

When School is not in session.  Work 8 hours a day.  No more than 40 hours a week.  No more than 6 days a week.

When School is in session.  3 hours on school days.  8 hours on week-end days.  No more than 18 hours a week.

Nightwork.  Not permitted between the hours of 7 PM.  (June 1 through Labor Day- 9 PM) and 7 AM.

Ages 16 & 17:

The federal standards do not restrict the hours for 16 & 17 year-olds. It is important to mention states have certain standards for youth labor.  A chart with information for each state can be found on the DOL site.

Occupational Restrictions for Youth:

There are restrictions for occupations allowed to employee youths under the age of 18.  Hazardous and/or dangerous occupations are banned.    A list of restricted occupations plus other information can be found in Federal Fact Sheet for Child Labor Provisions.  The fact sheet also gives a list of jobs 14 and 15 year-olds may hold.  They are mostly office jobs and retail and food service establishments with limited duties as listed.

Keeping summer help on during the year ensures that you have your staff ready to go next summer without having to rehire and retrain. So, go ahead and keep those summer employees on during the year, just make sure you adhere to these youth labor standards. Have questions? We are here to help!

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