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What Are the Work Rules for Teens?
By Cynthia Kirkeby
Aug 7, 2012, 13:03 PST



The federal government has a basic set of rules for when teens can work, but each state has its own set that you should check before you look for a job as a teenager.

The Basic Federal Work Rules for Teens

If you are 14 or 15, you can work . . .

Outside school hours

After 7 a.m. and until 7 p.m.
Except from June 1 through Labor Day, when you can work until 9 p.m.

You can work no more than:
  • 3 hours on a school day,
  • 18 hours in a school week,
  • 8 hours on a non-school day, and
  • 40 hours in non-school week.


If you are 16 or older, you can work . . .

Any day, any time of day, and for any number of hours. There are no restrictions on the work hours of youth age 16 or older.


Different rules apply to farms, and many individual States have stricter rules.

Check your state for the restrictions and rules for your area.




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