How Many Hours Can a Minor Work?

How Many Hours Can a Minor Work?

For minors, the hours they can work is an important factor in their ability to balance their academic and extracurricular pursuits with earning an income. But how many hours can a minor work?

Minors aged 14 to 17 must not work more than 8 hours a day, 6 days a week; 14 and 15-year-olds must not work more than 40 hours a week; while 16 and 17-year-olds are limited to 48 hours a week.

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When a Minor Can Work?

The hours minors can work depend on their age, the type of work, and whether they are attending school. In New York State, child labor laws are some of the most restrictive in the country. The law limits the hours minors under 18 can work while school is in session. 

For 16- and 17-year-olds to work between 10 PM and midnight on a day before a school day, written permission from a parent or guardian and a certificate of satisfactory academic standing from their school are needed.

How Many Hours a Week Can a Minor Work?

The number of hours a minor can work per week varies depending on the state and the type of work. In general, minors under the age of 16 are subject to stricter regulations and may only be allowed to work limited hours. 

For example, in the state of California, minors under the age of 18 are only allowed to work 3 hours per day during the school week, and 8 hours per day on non-school days. 

Additionally, they may not work more than 8 hours per day, or 40 hours per week, regardless of school attendance. It is best to check with the specific state labor laws for more information.

Ages Minors Are Legally Allowed to Work

The age at which a minor is legally allowed to work varies depending on the state and type of work. However, in general, the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) sets 14 years old as the minimum age for most non-agricultural work. 

Children as young as 12 years old can work in certain jobs, such as delivering newspapers and working in a family-owned business. The FLSA also sets limits on the number of hours and times of day that minors are allowed to work.

Federal Law

Restrictions imposed by the FLSA on employment for minor workers (under age 18) vary based on age, time of year, day of the week, and other factors.

The FLSA sets the minimum working age at 14 for non-agricultural jobs. Workers between the ages of 14 and 18 are prohibited from engaging in hazardous occupations as designated by the Department of Labor.

Such as mining, excavation, manufacturing explosives, and occupations involving certain power-driven equipment. In certain cases, minors may be employed in hazardous industries but only in tasks that the Department of Labor has deemed safe.

State Law

State labor laws may vary from federal laws, however the law that provides the greater protection to minors will take precedence.

All workers under 18 must abide by the rule of not being employed in any hazardous industries, even if the task has been deemed safe.

Hours Teens Are Legally Allowed to Work

For many teens, the start of a summer job can offer a chance to gain valuable experience, make some extra money, and build crucial life skills. 

But when it comes to working, there are regulations in place to ensure teens are not overworked. To make sure teens are not taken advantage of, it’s important to know the hours teens are legally allowed to work.

How Many Hours Can a 14 Year Old Work?

Minors aged 14-15 are restricted to working hours that do not interfere with their school schedule. On school days, they can work up to three hours per day and no more than 18 hours per week.

On non-school days, they can work up to 8 hours, and for the entire non-school week, a maximum of 40 hours can be put in.

How Many Hours Can a 16 Year Old Work?

The number of hours a 16-year-old can work varies depending on the state and type of work. The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) sets the following guidelines for the number of hours that 16 and 17-year-olds can work:

  • During non-school weeks, they can work 8 hours per day and 40 hours per week.
  • During school weeks, they can work 3 hours per day and 18 hours per week.
  • They cannot work before 7:00 am or after 7:00 pm (9:00 pm from June 1 through Labor Day).

17 year old

It’s important to note that state laws may impose stricter standards. 

For example, some states may limit the number of hours a 17-year-old can work per day or per week, or restrict the types of work that 17-year-olds can perform. It’s best to check with the specific state labor laws for more information.


Minors should be aware of the laws regarding how many hours they can work. Although the exact laws vary from state to state, the general rule of thumb is that minors should not exceed 40 hours of work per week and 8 hours of work per day. 

By understanding the regulations and following them, minors can ensure that they are not putting themselves at risk of exhaustion, health issues, and other determinants associated with overwork. Contact us for more content like this!

Frequently Asked Questions About How Many Hours Can a Minor Work

16- and 17-year-olds may be exempt from the 10-hour consecutive and 24-hour daily working time limit if it is deemed to be in their best interest. No work can take place between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m. for 16-year-olds.

Work up to 8 hours daily, or 48 hours weekly, when school is not in session is permitted. Employment hours are limited to between 5 a.m. and 12:30 a.m.

Generally, employers should not ask you to work more than 40 hours a week or 8 hours a day. However, in special cases, they may require extra hours from you if no one aged 18 or above is available to do the task.

You can work in people’s residences as a babysitter, pet sitter, tutor, home organizer, or pool cleaner. Additionally, you can offer freelance services as a programmer or virtual tutor.

Part-time job means a person works a set number of hours each week, which can range from a few to around 30 hours.

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By Alex

Alex is one of the industry's most highly-regarded career experts with many years of experience in career development, human resources, job hunting strategies, workplace success, and hiring. Alex is the founder of also writes about job searching and careers for The Business Beaster.