Tips for employers, teens this summer

Various workers

Wage and Hour Bulletin

April 2023

Teen waitress wearing an apron standing in a coffee shop.

Tips for employers, teens this summer

As the school year comes to an end, many teens and employers are thinking about summer jobs.

Differences between state and federal laws outlining when and what jobs teens can work can be confusing. Here are some tips for employers, teen workers and their parents.

1. Understand you have a right to a safe workplace 

From 2018 to 2020, 373 Minnesota 14- to 17-year-olds suffered serious work-related injuries. Of these injured teen workers, 99 worked in retail stores and 85 worked in restaurants and other eating places.

Employers should promote workplace safety and health by providing adequate job orientation and training, maintaining a clean, organized work area and providing and maintaining necessary machine safeguards and personal protective equipment.

Request a free consultation from Minnesota OSHA Workplace Consultation and learn how employers can improve workplace safety and health. Visit  

2. Know what the laws say about age, hours restrictions for teens 

Teens under the age of 14 typically cannot work in Minnesota.  

Employers must obtain proof of age from each teen worker, regardless of their age. This could be an I-9 form or a copy of a birth certificate or driver’s license. A teen could also contact their school district to request an age certificate, which they can then provide to their employer as proof of age. 

The hours a teen can work also depends on their age.  Learn more at

3. Be aware of what types of jobs teens cannot have 

The type of job a teen can have also depends on their age. For example, those under 16 are prohibited from work involving machinery, transportation and more. Additionally, those under 18 cannot work in rooms where liquor is served or consumed, with some exceptions.

Find more information about child labor laws at

A close up of a computer screen with participants in a videoconference meeting.

Save the date:  June 13 child labor webinar

DLI’s Labor Standards unit is providing a series of webinars to help workers and employers better understand the state’s wage and hour laws. 

The June 13 webinar will cover state and federal child labor laws, including age and hours restrictions for teen workers in Minnesota. 

To learn more and register, visit

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Labor Standards serves the people of Minnesota by providing
information about the state's wage, hour and employment laws.

Phone:  651-284-5075 or 800-342-5354