Child Employment

A Guide to Child Employment

Service update - 21 June 2021

In line with the Government's road map announcement on the easing of lockdown restrictions, we are now processing child work permits.

Employers are reminded to ensure they have a valid work permit in place for all children they employ between the ages of 13 and 16 years old.  Work permits are free and valid for 12 months from the date of issue. Employers must apply for a work permit within seven days of a child starting work.

For further information please send us a message.

The hours of work and conditions of child employment are described by the Children and Young Persons Acts 1933, the Children (Protection at Work) Regulations 1998 and Isle of Wight Council Byelaws on the Employment of Children 1998.

These laws are in place to protect the health, safety, well-being and education of children.  It is the responsibility of the employer to ensure that children of compulsory school age have a permit, and are working within the regulations.

Anyone breaking the laws and byelaws covering child employment face a fine of up to £1000. It is also important to note that if a child is working without a child employment permit, there is a risk that the employer will not be insured against accidents involving the child.

We carry out visits to local employers to make sure that young people in part-time jobs are safe and working legally.

Specific hours of work allowed for children aged 13 to 16

Children aged 13 and 14 years

Term Time:

  • Maximum 12 hours in any seven day week.
  • Maximum two hours on any school day; up to one hour before school and up to one hour after school as long as employment is not before 7.00am or after 7.00pm or up to two hours after school as long as employment ceases by 7.00pm.
  • Saturday maximum five hours (one hour break required after four hours continuous work).
  • Sunday maximum two hours (between 7.00am and 7.00pm).  

 School Holidays

  • Maximum 25 hours per seven day week (five hours in any one day. Sunday two hours only)

Children aged 15 and 16 years

Please note: that you do not need a permit once a child reaches compulsory school age which is the last Friday in June of the school year in which they reach the age of 16.

Term Time

  • Maximum 12 hours in any seven day week.
  • Maximum two hours on any school day; up to one hour before school and up to one hour after school as long as employment is not before 7.00am or after 7.00pm or up to two hours after school as long as employment ceases by 7.00pm.
  • Saturday maximum eight hours (one hour break required after five hours continuous work).
  • Sunday maximum two hours (between 7.00am and 7.00pm).

 School Holidays

  • Maximum 35 hours per seven day week (eight hours in any one day. Sunday two hours only).

Information and guidance for employers, parents and children

Please read our leaflets for more information on the employment of children and young people