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Youth Employment Laws

The North Dakota Department of Labor and Human Rights enforces state youth employment laws. These laws establish a minimum age of 14 to be employed in North Dakota and place limitations on the employment of teens ages 14 and 15, specifically:

  1. Require 14 and 15 year-old workers to file an Employment and Age Certificate with the Department of Labor and Human Rights. This form contains sections to be completed by the worker, the worker's parent or guardian, and the employer. It is specific to each job held and a new certificate must be filed when a 14 or 15 year-old worker changes jobs. Forms are available from the Department of Labor and Human Rights' office and web site. Job Service North Dakota offices and County School Superintendents' offices may also have a supply.
  2. Limit the hours that may be worked by persons ages 14 and 15. Such persons may only work between the hours of 7:00 AM and 7:00 PM from Labor Day through May 31 and between the hours of 7:00 AM and 9:00 PM from June 1 through Labor Day. In addition, 14 and 15 year-old workers are limited to a maximum of 3 hours of work on a school day and 8 hours on a non-school day and 18 hours in a school week and 40 hours in a non-school week. A school week is any week, Sunday through Saturday, in which school attendance is required for any part of four or more days.
  3. Prohibit persons ages 14 and 15 from performing certain types of work. Some examples of prohibited employment are employment involving the use of power driven machinery, construction work, work involving the use of chemicals, door-to-door sales, driving, and cooking. Lawnmowing is not prohibited for persons ages 14 and 15 under state law but is prohibited by federal law, except in domestic employment.

There are no restrictions on employment for persons age 16 and over under North Dakota youth employment laws. However, federal child labor laws prohibit certain types of employment for anyone under 18 years of age. Types of employment prohibited under these rules include roofing, most driving, and most work involving power-driven machines.

Teens may be exempt from some or all of the state youth employment rules under certain conditions:

  1. They are exempt from the minimum age (14) and the requirement to file an Employment and Age Certificate if they work for and under the direct supervision of their parent or guardian and if that person is 100 percent owner of the business.
  2. They are exempt from the restricted hours and the requirement to file an Employment and Age Certificate if they are exempt from compulsory school attendance because they have completed the requirements for graduation, because they are needed to help financially support their family, or because they cannot be taught in a mainstream classroom due to a disability.
  3. They are exempt from the minimum age, restricted hours, and the requirement to file an Employment and Age Certificate if they work in domestic service (performing services of a household nature in or about the employer's private home).
  4. They are exempt from all youth employment provisions if they work in agricultural employment.

Babysitting in domestic service does not constitute employment unless it involves 20 or more hours of work for 3 or more consecutive weeks.

Brochure: Youth Employment Laws in North Dakota

  • 600 East Boulevard Ave
  • Dept 406
  • Bismarck ND 58505-0340
  • (701) 328-2660
  • 1-800-582-8032 - In-state toll-free
  • 1-800-366-6888 or 1-800-366-6889 - TTY (Relay ND)
  • (701) 328-2031 Fax