Archive RSS
Blog  »  June 2017  »  Employing Under 18's - What you need to know - Blog
Jun 17

Posted by
Jennie Hussey

Employing Under 18's - What you need to know

With the summer season upon us many employers will be looking at their summer rosters. Many will start to consider recruiting teenagers for the summer months, others will look to increase the hours of young students currently working weekends and/or evenings. In doing so, employers need to be mindful that specific legislation is in place to protect younger workers which must be fully adhered to.

It is unlawful to employ anyone under the age of 13 at all, except in limited circumstances, e.g child actors, but a permit is required from the local authority. Other restrictions in place in relation to the employment of children are listed below.

Hours of Work

Young workers are entitled to:

  • Two days off per week
  • A daily rest break of 12 consecutive hours (the break between finishing work on one day and starting work the next)
  • A rest break of at least 30 minutes if the working day lasts more than 4.5 hours

Children are not allowed to work:

  • Before 7 am or after 7 pm (some exceptions may apply)
  • For more than one hour before school
  • More than 8 hours a day and 40 hours a week
  • Without a 2-week break from any work during the school holidays in each year. 

Location of Work

Children are not allowed to work:

  • In factories or industrial sites
  • In pubs or betting shops
  • In any work that may be harmful to their health, well-being or education

Minimum Wage Rates

Workers aged between 16 and 17 are entitled to at least £4.05 per hour. School-aged workers are not entitled to minimum wage. 

Annual leave

Annual leave accrues in the normal manner for young workers.

BrightPay - Payroll and Auto Enrolment Software
Bright Contracts - Employment Contracts and Handbooks


The new standard in payroll software, now available for employers in the UK and Ireland.

UK Website  Ireland Website

Bright Contracts

Create tailored professional employment contracts and staff handbooks. Available for employers in the UK and Ireland.

UK Website  Ireland Website