As the school year gets underway many teens will be getting jobs or seeking holiday employment. Our Gastonia workers’ compensation lawyers need you to know that employers have a special obligation and must obey strict rules when employing young workers.
Sadly, almost 50 teens a year die from injuries suffered at work. Recently on our North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Blog we went over the changes to the Child Labor Regulations.
Let’s do a quick recap of some youth employment rules:
-Anyone employing a youth under 18 must get from them a Youth Employment Certificate (YEC). You can retrieve a YEC online .
-An employer must keep the youth’s YEC and produce it if asked by any person authorized to investigate a youth employment issue.
-An employer must keep the YEC even after the youth leaves for at least two years.
Hour Limitations for 14- and 15-year-olds:
-Teens are limited to 3 hours per day while school is in session and no more than eight hours per day when school is not in session.
-They can only work between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. when school is in session and until 9:00 p.m. from June 1 thru Labor Day when school is not in session.
-A maximum work week is 18 hours when school is in session or 40 hours when school is not in session.
-They can’t work during school hours.
-After 5 consecutive hours worked they must get a 30-minute break.
In addition, 16 and 17-year-olds during the school year can’t work between 11:00 pm and 5:00 am when there is school the next day unless written permission from the teens principal and parents is obtained by the employer. They also cannot work in hazardous/detrimental occupations as listed in Part 570 subpart E of Hazardous Occupations 29.
Here’s a short quiz every young person should take about workplace safety and health and workers’ rights.
-True or False? It’s the law that your employer gives you training about safety and health hazards on your job.
True. Before starting your new job you should get training on how to do it safely. Training about dangerous chemicals and other safety and health issues at your workplace is a requirement by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).
-True or False? If you are under 16 there is a law that sets limits on how late you can work on a school night.
True. On a school night 14 and 15 year olds can only work until 7pm. Young workers ages 16 and 17 years-old in some states also have limitations on how late they can work. Child labor laws are designed to protect teens from working too long, too early, or too late.
-True or False? Can you drive a car on public roads if you are 16 years old as part of your employment.
False. 16 year-olds cannot drive on public roads; even 17 year olds have limitations. Teens who are 16 may not drive a car or truck on public streets as part of their job. A few states don’t allow anyone under 18 to drive as part of their job.
-True or False? If you get hurt at work your medical care must be paid by your employer.
True. The law requires that your employer must supply workers’ compensation benefits.
-How many teens get injured at the workplace in the U.S., one per day or one per hour or one every 10 minutes?
One every 10 minutes. At least 53,000 teens every year go to the emergency room for treatment due to a workplace injury. It is estimated that only one-third of teens injured at work need treatment, which means more than 100,000 additional teens are injured but don’t go to the hospital.
This quiz is part of Youth @ Work-Talking Safety a curriculum designed to raise awareness among teens about occupational health and safety and give them the basic skills and knowledge needed to become active contributors in creating a safe and healthy workplace environment.
If you know a teen that has been injured on the job or has a disability or workers’ compensation claim, contact the Lee Law Offices, P.A. for help regarding your rights. Call today at 1-800-887-1965 for a free initial consultation to discuss your case.
More Blog Entries:
Parental Communication about Work Dangers Can Reduce Teen Injuries at Work in Charlotte, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Blog, August 2, 2011.
North Carolina Youth Carnival Ends in Tragedy – Teen Work Accidents a Summer Danger, North Carolina Workers’ Compensation Lawyers Blog, May 16, 2011.