Regulations For Employing Minors Ages 14-17 2018

Apr 10, 2018 | Member News

As high school students begin applying for summer jobs, dealers should be aware of the child labor laws that set forth a number of provisions that apply to 14 through 17-year-olds. 

14 and 15-year-old employees may perform nonhazardous duties. They may not be employed for more than 3 hours on a school day nor more than 8 hours on a non-school day; no more than 18 hours during a school week nor 40 hours during a non-school week. These minors may not be employed before 7 a.m. or after 7 p.m., except during a school vacation period during which time they may work until 9 p.m. Students enrolled in summer school are subject to the 18 hour work week limitations. 

Under state law, 16 and 17-year-olds may perform nonhazardous duties. They may not be employed for more than 28 hours a week during school nor more than 8 hours in a single day. These minors may not be employed before 6 a.m. or after 12 midnight, except during a school vacation period when they are permitted to work until 1 a.m. During school vacation, 16 and 17 year-olds may not be employed more than 10 hours per day nor 48 hours in a week. Any hours over 44 in a week must be voluntarily agreed to by the minor who may reject any request for employment in excess of 44 hours in a week without retaliation. Students enrolled in summer school are subject to the 28 hour week, employed for no more than 8 hours per day. These restrictions for 16 and 17 year-olds do not apply to minors who have graduated from high school. 

Nonhazardous duties include: 
The U.S. Department of Labor has concluded that the use of vehicle lifts does not amount to a hazardous occupation.

  • office and clerical work; 
  • selling/cashier; 
  • errand and delivery work by foot, bicycle or public transportation; 
  • clean-up work and maintenance of grounds (federal law prohibits employees 15 or younger from operating power-driven mowers or cutters); 
  • car cleaning, washing and polishing, not including work involving the inflation of any tire mounted on a rim equipped with a removable ring; and 
  • use of vehicle lifts and grease racks by employees 16 and older. 

Nonhazardous duty requirements apply to any minor employee, including a son or daughter of the dealer. Dealers should also note that every minor employee must receive at least minimum wage per hour for all hours worked. Minimum wage is currently $7.25 per hour. Sixteen and 17-year-olds are subject to be paid overtime for any hours worked over 40. 

DOL Clarifies Teen Driving Rules 

The Department of Labor (DOL) has provided rules to clarify the Drive for Teen Employment Act of 1998. The DOL’s rules provide guidance on what constitutes prohibited “urgent time-sensitive deliveries”.

The rules also clarify that, while employers have to prove compliance with the Act, no specific records must be created or maintained. 

Under the Act, only licensed 17-year-olds are permitted to engage in limited driving on public roads. Licensed 16-year-olds may only drive on private property, such as dealership lots; 16-year-olds may not drive on public roadways in the course of employment. On-the-job driving by employees 18 and older is not regulated. 

17-year-olds may drive on public roads while on the job, if they: 

  • hold a valid state driver’s license; 
  • have completed a state-approved driver education course; 
  • are instructed that seat belts must be used; and 
  • do not have a record of moving violations at the time of hire. 

The motor vehicle driven must: 

  • not exceed 6,000 lbs. gross vehicle weight; 
  • be equipped with a seat belt; and 
  • not be used for the towing of vehicles. 

Driving is permitted if it is: 
Urgent, Time-Sensitive Deliveries Clarified 

  • restricted to daylight hours; 
  • within a 30-mile radius of the place of employment; and 
  • occasional and incidental (no more than 1/3 of an employee’s work time on a daily basis and no more than 20% of an employee’s work time per week).

Urgent time-sensitive deliveries are prohibited for drivers under the age of 18. Because they may be subject to timelines, schedules, and/or turnaround times, drivers may hurry to complete the delivery. 

Prohibited trips would include the delivery of materials under a deadline (e.g., deposits to a bank at closing) and the shuttling of passengers to and from transportation depots to meet transport schedules. 

Delivery and Passenger Transport Limited 

The law allows 17-year-olds limited daily trips for delivery and passenger transport: 

  • up to two trips may be made to deliver an employer’s goods to a customer. The delivery of a vehicle is not subject to this limitation; 
  • transporting of persons is limited to three passengers (including other employees); 
  • transporting non-employee passengers is limited to two trips a day; and 
  • in addition to urgent, time-sensitive deliveries, other types of deliveries that are prohibited include route deliveries or sales; or for hire transportation of property, goods or passengers. 

Background Checks Should be Performed 

At the time of application, prospective drivers/ employees should sign a waiver authorizing background checks for driving record and driver’s education verification. 

Prospective drivers/employees should be told at the time they are making application for employment that, if hired, they will be required to provide a written, signed statement that they meet the criteria of the requirements listed earlier, such as a valid driver’s license. Since the law requires that teenage drivers be instructed to wear safety belts, the statement should also include a certification from teenage employees that they have been so instructed. 

Obtaining Working Papers for Minors 

Working papers must be obtained from public school officials in the district in which the minor resides before a minor may work in a dealership. The minor’s parent, guardian, or legal custodian must apply for these permits and certificates. If the minor is terminated, the employment certificate must be returned to the issuing official. If the minor uses a work permit, the employer must notify the school district within five days of the termination. 

Courtesy of PAA Bulletin No. 7, 4/9/2018