Maryland residents contemplating starting their first job need to make sure they're old enough to start legally working. Maryland has several laws and regulations around working minors, including age restrictions, permit requirements, and limitations on hours they can work.
Age Guidelines to Work in Maryland
Both federal child labor laws and Maryland state law are in accordance that the minimum age to work is 14, with some exceptions. Once you determine that you meet the minimum age to work in your state, you can begin to look for jobs for kids. Job ideas include a paper route, babysitting, and gardening work.
The minimum age to work does not include door-to-door sales, working in the agricultural field, and the child entertainment industry. All of those employment categories have different minimum age requirements.
Getting a Work Permit in Maryland
Maryland state law requires child employment permits for youth under age 18 to work. According to the Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation, minors must apply for a permit online, print it, sign it, and have their parent or guardian and employer sign it as well.
The state doesn't issue a work permit to a minor until they receive a job offer. Permits don't carry over from job to job; minors must get a new permit each time they get a new job.
The Hours Teens Can Work
Although teens ages 14-15 can work in a variety of jobs, including in retail, offices, and restaurants, the hours they work are restricted. Teens in this age range can't work more than four hours on any day or more than 23 hours in any week when school is in session. When school is out, they can't work more than eight hours on any day or more than 40 hours in any week.
Youth this age must only work between the hours of 7 a.m. and 8 p.m. (but they may work until 9 p.m. from Memorial Day to Labor Day). Teens of all ages may not work more than five consecutive hours without a non-working period of at least 30 minutes.
Teens ages 16-17 may not work more than 12 hours in a combination of school hours and work hours daily. Also, they must be allowed at least eight consecutive hours of non-work, non-school time daily. Teens of any age are forbidden to work in hazardous jobs likely to cause bodily harm, death or adverse health effects.
For more information on the minimum age to work in Maryland and how to obtain employment certificates, visit the Maryland State Labor Website.