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Child Labor Laws & Information

The Child Labor Section enforces the provisions of the Florida Child Labor Laws. The purpose of the law is to protect the health and welfare of minors in the workplace and safeguard their education.

The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation site provides access to the following components:

Employers If you employ minors between the ages of 14 and 17, this section contains required documents, posters, breaks, and work hour limitations.

Educators Teachers and Administrators can view their responsibilities under the Child Labor Law. 

Parents & Teens Information about work permits, hour limitations, breaks, and waivers of the law.

Entertainment Industry There are special limitations for minors employed in the Entertainment Industry.

Prohibited Occupations There are both state and federal laws prohibiting minors from employment in certain occupations.

Safety Information The workplace can be a dangerous environment for teens. Site contains information on teen safety and tips for employers.

Complaints: Contacts if you wish to report an alleged violation of the Child Labor Law.

Child Labor Presentations and Training Employers may request training by contacting the Bureau of Child Labor at 1.800.226.2536.

Child Labor Laws Poster Employers who hire minors 14-17 years of age are required to post the Florida Child Labor Law Poster. By calling Child Labor Compliance at 1.800.226.2536.

Information on the following categories can be found in the Parent & Teens section of the Florida Child Labor Laws website.

  • Work Permits
  • Hour Limitations
  • Breaks
  • Days
  • Exemptions
  • Teen Jobs and Training
  • Tips for Parents
  • Prohibited Occupations

Waivers of Florida's Child Labor Law

What are waivers of the Florida Child Labor Law?

"Waivers of the Florida Child Labor Law" can be found in Child Labor Rule, Chapter 61L-2.007, FAC

While the Florida Child Labor Law is designed to serve and protect minors and to encourage them to remain in the K-12 programs, some minors feel that either the law conflicts with their best interest or that their life circumstances are such that they need to work. Minors have the right to request they be exempt from parts of the Child Labor Law.

Minors in the entertainment industry are covered separately under different rules enforced by the Department of Business and Professional Regulation, Child Labor Program

How are waivers of the Florida Child Labor Law granted?

Partial waivers are granted on a case-by-case basis, which means that each application is judged on its own merits. Only when it clearly appears to be in the best interest of the minor will the waiver be approved.

Districts may create their own standardized form (Waiver Application) using established criteria as outlined in the Rule 61L-2.007(3): School Status; Financial Hardship; Medical Hardship; Other Hardship; Court Order. These forms should clearly define those Florida Child Labor Laws that are being waived; i.e., working during normal school hours (minor works from 1:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m.), more than 30 hours per week (minor approved to work as many as 40 hours per week), working past 11 p.m. (minor may work until 11:30 p.m.) etc., and be in the best interest of the minor.

Note: In lieu of a letter, school districts may develop a standardized form that depicts the criteria used for approval and clearly defines the law to be waived.

Additional information on obtaining a waiver and/or forms may be obtained through the Child Labor web site at:

Click on either the “Employers or Parents & Teens section. The explanation of how to apply for a waiver is explained.

What are student learner exemptions for hazardous occupations?

In 1996, Senate Bill 2262 amended the Child Labor Statutes by providing "student learner exemptions" for eight specific hazardous occupations which are prohibited. The State legislation was very similar to federal changes enacted the same year. Below is the section of the law that applies to student learner exemptions:

Chapter 450.161 of the Child Labor Law specifically addresses career education of children and says:

450.161 Chapter not to affect career education of children; other exceptions.—Nothing in this chapter shall prevent minors of any age from receiving career education furnished by the United States, this state, or any county or other political subdivision of this state and duly approved by the Department of Education or other duly constituted authority, nor any apprentice indentured under a plan approved by the Department of Economic Opportunity, or prevent the employment of any minor 14 years of age or older when such employment is authorized as an integral part of, or supplement to, such a course in career education and is authorized by regulations of the district school board of the district in which such minor is employed, provided the employment is in compliance with the provisions of ss. 450.021(4) and 450.061. Exemptions for the employment of student learners 16 to 18 years of age are provided in s. 450.061. Such an exemption shall apply when:

  • (1) The student learner is enrolled in a youth vocational training program under a recognized state or local educational authority.
  • (2) Such student learner is employed under a written agreement that provides:
  • (a) That the work of the student learner in the occupation declared particularly hazardous shall be incidental to the training.
  • (b) That such work shall be intermittent and for short periods of time and under the direct and close supervision of a qualified and experienced person.
  • (c) That safety instructions shall be given by the school and correlated by the employer with on-the-job training.
  • (d) That a schedule of organized and progressive work processes to be performed on the job shall have been prepared.

Each such written agreement shall contain the name of the student learner and shall be signed by the employer, the school coordinator and principal, and the parent or legal guardian. Copies of each agreement shall be kept on file by both the school and the employer. This exemption for the employment of student learners may be revoked in any individual situation when it is found that reasonable precautions have not been observed for the safety of minors employed thereunder. A high school graduate may be employed in an occupation in which he or she has completed training as a student learner, as provided in this section, even though he or she is not yet 18 years of age.