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By the age of 14, you may be interested in getting a part-time job to earn some extra cash. If you are a minor who wants to get a summer job, you will need a work permit.

If you are applying for a permit when school is not in session, keep reading to find out more.

The California employment lawyers at Mara Law Firm would like to review the basics of work permits, who is allowed to issue a work permit and the forms you need to obtain a work permit. 

Work Permit Basics

Work permits are required for all minors under the age of 18 prior to starting a job. Employers must abide by state and federal occupational restrictions, which require that all workers are at least 14 years of age.

Work permits are required for most jobs, except for newspaper carriers, yard workers for private homes, and babysitters. Minors are restricted to only being employed in non-hazardous jobs.

General information regarding work permits:

  • A student must have a work permit from their high school.
  • Work permits are renewed yearly at the start of school or when a student obtains a new job.
  • A student must attend school full-time (except for summer vacation) and cannot be truant.
  • All minors must be covered by Workers’ Compensation, including minors employed by businesses operating from a private residence.
  • It is illegal for an employer to fire or punish a student for reporting a workplace problem, such as unpaid wages.

Who May Issue a Work Permit?

According to California Education Code § 49110, the following persons are allowed to issue a minor a work permit:

  • Superintendent of the school district in which the minor resides
  • Superintendent of county schools if the minor does not reside within a school district territory
  • A person holding a service credential with a specialization in pupil personnel services
  • Work Experience Education teacher/coordinator
  • Principal of a school who has been designated by the principal and has self-certified his/her working knowledge of child labor laws
  • If the superintendent is unavailable, he or she may authorize another person, in writing, to issue the permit

During the summer or when school is on break, the superintendent of the school district where the minor resides would issue the work permit. 

Entertainment Work Permits

The Labor Commissioner’s Office issues all entertainment work permits. Minors that are 15 days old to 18 years old must have an entertainment work permit if they are employed in the entertainment industry.

Minors who are working as advertising or photographic models must have an entertainment work permit. This specialized permit is also required for jobs that are noncommercial. 

Forms Needed to Obtain a Work Permit

It is usually a two-step process for a minor to obtain a work permit:

  • The minor and his or her guardian/parent will complete the Statement of Intent to Employ a Minor and Request for a Work-Permit Certificate of Age (CDE Form B1-1)
  • The B1-1 form will be submitted to the student’s school district.
  • The school district will review the B1-1 form.
  • If everything is in order, the school will issue a Permit to Employ and Work (CDE Form B1-4)—the physical work permit.

The work permit lists the following:

  • The address of the place of employment 
  • The maximum permitted work hours
  • If there are any work limitations

Contact a California Employment Law Attorney 

If you have a child that is interested in working over the summer, knowing how to get a work permit will allow the process to run more smoothly. We are here to answer any concerns you may have regarding your child’s employment. Contact our firm today to set up a free consultation. 

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