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Certain jobs, such as summer work and evening and weekend shift work, have a propensity to attract a high number of candidates under the age of 18. Employers considering hiring minors must understand the federal and state laws as they relate to the employment of minors.
The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) imposes federal restrictions on the employment of children and teens under the age of 18. See the U.S. Department of Labor's (DOL's) FLSA Child Labor Provisions.
Some of these provisions include the following:
Each state has laws regulating the minimum work ages, hours of work, the types of employment allowed and required documentation for minors. As work permits or certificates may be required by state law, employers should check their individual state requirements, and consider any specific requirements surrounding their industry.
Employers should request age certificates from minors and keep them on file throughout the minor's employment. When employment is terminated, the employer must return the age certificate so that the minor can provide it to future employers as proof of age. Age certificates may be issued by the DOL Wage and Hour Division or by appropriate state agencies; see the DOL's YouthRules! website for more information. In states that do not have age certificates, an employer may use documents such as a birth certificate or a baptismal certificate with date of birth as a document for proof of age.
The HR Knowledge Center has gathered resources on current topics in HR management. Click here to view and request information.
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