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Child labor — Pennsylvania

Minimum ages for employment

Both federal and state laws regulate the employment of minors, that is, those under 18 years of age. Employers must adhere to the stricter requirements of the two.

The federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) sets age 14 as the minimum age for most non-agricultural/non-hazardous work. However, the FLSA provides that minors under 14 may:

  1. deliver newspapers
  1. perform in radio, television, movie or theatrical productions
  1. work in businesses owned by their parents (except in mining, manufacturing or hazardous jobs) 
  1. babysit.

Pennsylvania law, also sets age 14 as the minimum age to perform most non-hazardous work. Exceptions to the minimum age of 14 include farmers, caddies beginning at age 12, and news carriers beginning at age 11. Juvenile performers in the field of entertainment may work at any age, but minors between the ages of 7 and 18 need special permits from the Pennsylvania Department of Labor and Industry and cannot work where alcohol is served.

Hour restrictions for minors

With few exceptions,...

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