How Old Do You Have to Be to Work?

How old you have to get a job is a common question among teenagers. Jobs minors can get varies as many teenagers want to work only during their school holidays. From the minimum age requirements to employment opportunities, we’ve covered them all. 

Young job seekers are now blessed with part-time jobs or job duties that allow them to work on a non-school day. From child labor laws to job opportunities, we’ve got all our bases covered to help you get great jobs. Let’s not waste any time and dive into launching your future.

At What Age Are You Legally Eligible to Work in the US?

As per the general rule of the Fair Labor Standards Act, the minimum age requirement for employment is 14 years of age. The act also limits the number of hours minors are set to work, which gives them time for school hours. 

However, this minimum age for employment varies as minors may not work in any job considered hazardous by the Secretary of Labor. The safety requirements of minors are an essential aspect that the FLSA takes into consideration when it comes to jobs considered hazardous.

If You Are 13 Years Old or Younger

Being a 13-year-old or even younger disregard you from being considered for an actual job, thanks to the child labour laws. However, you can earn a few bucks by doing menial jobs around your neighbourhood. Be sure to get your parent or guardian’s consent before going on a job search. 

Here is a list of jobs that you can do as a 13-year-old or younger.

  1. Babysitting
  2. Car cleaning
  3. Dog Walking
  4. Pet sitter
  5. Lawnmower

If You Are 14 or 15 Years Old

During this age, you are legally allowed to get your work permit and find a job. You can start your job search in local businesses that hire minors.

Teenagers at 14/15 years of age are allowed to do jobs that include clerical work, bagging, cashiers and price marking. This allows you to work in clothing stores, or get a restaurant job. 

If You Are 16 or 17 Years Old

As a 16 or 17-year-old teenager, you can try jobs at grocery stores and amusement parks. The state labour laws will not allow you to get hazardous jobs like working with power-driven equipment. Instead, you can get a part-time gig at retail stores or community centres.

Always keep an eye out for job alerts 

If You Are 18+

Some jobs, like waiting tables or bartending, require workers to sell or serve alcohol, and you have to be at least 18 (or 21 in some states) to do this. As an 18-year-old, your job opportunities are more than a 14-year-old.

Teen Employment Laws You Should Know

  • If state law and the FLSA overlap, the law more protective of the minor will apply.
  • Many states also have their minimum wage laws, and your potential employer has to pay you whichever rate—state or federal—is higher.
  • During a school week, these minors can work a maximum of three hours per day and 18 hours per week. When school isn’t in session, 14- and 15-year-olds can work up to eight hours a day and 40 hours a week. Note that working hours vary on labour day. 
  • The federal child labour laws prohibit any 14-year-old or younger child to work in non-agricultural occupations.

The Perks of Getting a Part-time Job as a Teen

  • Teenagers will learn to set aside money for things like clothes, movies, and automobile expenses even if they are just utilising their wages for personal expenses.
  • Gain practical, marketable skills like enhancing their communication, gaining people skills, mastering interview techniques, and applying for jobs.
  • Acquire meaningful employment experiences that will look great on a portfolio.
  • May open up networking opportunities and lead a young person into a fruitful lifetime career.
  • Learn how to manage their time with working on a school day and improve your customer service skills

How Much Will You Get Paid?

In most cases, you can expect to receive the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. You should also know that employers may pay employees under the age of 20 youth a minimum wage of $4.25 for the first 90 days they are employed. So the amount you get paid depends on the hours worked. 

Minimum Working Age by State 2022 in the USA

We have listed the minimum working age in each state of the USA. Remember to get your employment certificate if you pass these age requirements. 

Alabama – 16

Alaska – 16

Arizona – 16

Arkansas – 18

California – 16

Colorado – 16

Connecticut – 14

Delaware – 14

Florida – 14

Georgia – 18

Hawaii – 16

Idaho – 12

Illinois – 14

Indiana – 16

Iowa – 14

Kansas – 14

Kentucky – 14

Louisiana – 14

Maine – 14

Maryland – 14

Massachusetts – 16

Michigan – 16

Minnesota – 14

Mississippi – 16

Missouri – 14

Montana – 14

Nebraska – 14

Nevada – 18

New Hampshire – 16

New Jersey – 16

New Mexico – 16

New York – 14

North Carolina – 14

North Dakota – 16

Ohio – 14

Oklahoma – 16

Oregon – 14

Pennsylvania – 14

Rhode Island – 16

South Carolina – 14

South Dakota – 14

Tennessee – 14

Texas – 16

Utah – 16

Vermont – 16

Virginia – 18

Washington – 15

West Virginia – 18

Wisconsin – 12

Wyoming – 14

Companies That Hire Teens

Most retail stores will hire teens of legal age to work as salespeople or perhaps as a cashier. Grocery stores always seem to need stockers and baggers. And lots of employers need help with basic tasks like cleaning. 

Various companies hire young workers to help with such menial jobs. You can always check with your guidance counsellor or school employment office if you have one.


Who doesn’t love going to the movie theatre? AMC is a cool place that hires teenagers, even at 14 and 15. The opportunities include selling tickets, concessions, and maintenance around the theatre.

If you have a local independent theatre near you, you can always go down there and inquire about getting a job at AMC.

Baskin Robbins

The business takes great pleasure in offering the best first-job experience. The minimum age required for employment with the organisation is 16 years old. To assist young employees in growing and developing their talents, it provides training programmes and mentoring opportunities.

Baskin-Robbins is renowned for its flexible hours, which enables staff members to juggle employment with other commitments like education.

Chick fil a

Teenagers 16 and older are often hired by Chick-fil-A to serve customers their beloved chicken. Some states, though, authorise young people to work a certain amount of hours with a permit.

These places may also hire individuals that are 14 or 15 years old. Teenagers are typically limited by regulations to brief stints and only non-hazardous duties.

Dairy Queen

In general, you must be at least 16 years old to be hired at Dairy Queen as an entry-level or part-time employee. Either in the Kitchen, as the Chill Staff, or as a Cake Crew Team Member.

However, because each Dairy Queen establishment is individually owned and run, some of them will take on 14- and 15-year-old employees who have a work permit.


It is a question of preference whether Kroger recruits youngsters at 16, 15, or 14 years old. The sort of position you applied for, the corporate policies and the culture of the shop are all relevant factors.

The minimum age requirement to take a job at Kroger is typically sixteen years old, but some jobs allow kids who are fourteen.

Local Amusement/entertainment Avenues

Huge amusement parks are the kind of places that often hire minors for seasonal jobs, especially. Be sure to also check out bowling alleys and arcades as well. Young workers are always hired in entertainment places like local carnivals, movie theatres, beaches or even aquatic centres.


McDonald’s is among the biggest recruiters of entry-level workers in the world, with almost 2 million employees on its payroll. Several of these people are also under 18 years of age. The majority of the fast-food chain’s franchises have minimum hiring age limits of 16 or older.

However, if they have a legal work permit, many teenage applicants can find jobs.


With or without the advantage of preceding work experience, children from the age of 14 can start passing along our culture, and potential employees of all ages will undoubtedly find Publix to be a fulfilling place to work. The availability of positions will depend on the demand for these roles in each individual store. 


Supermarket businesses provide flexible work schedules, good training, and numerous prospects for growth. Fortunately, Safeway takes on employees as young as 14. Their entry-level positions offer excellent chances for young people looking for work.

Six flags

Six Flags attracts a diverse workforce, offering first jobs for teenagers and internships for college credit. There is always a role available for you whether you choose to work indoors or outside, dealing with visitors or behind the scenes.

Stop & Shop

To fill positions in customer service and replenishment, Stop & Shop seeks to hire entry-level candidates. Entry-level positions often have extremely few constraints on hiring qualifications.

Most prerequisites for consideration for employment are normally satisfied by achieving the basic hiring age of 16.

Taco Bell

 You should be at least 16 years old if you want to work and contribute or lead at Taco Bell. The recruitment age does vary, though, as a result of the fact that many sites are franchises. You will need to visit the business you are keen to work at and inquire about their minimum hiring age. 


This business provides an excellent method anyone can do. Uhaul offers entry-level jobs at home for anyone 16 and older in the reservation and customer support fields.

Winn Dixie

Winn-Dixie is a well-liked employer among teenagers looking for work because several states in the Southeast let minors start working at the age of 13. The retailer typically desires that its entry-level staff members be at least 16 years old. Younger teenagers can, however, apply for some positions. 


In a nutshell, it’s pretty easy to get a job as a teenager. With countless opportunities from respectable companies and federal laws backing you up, you’re good to go.

Earning those extra bucks after school hours will be a breeze, especially because you aren’t allowed to do hazardous jobs. You can even get more than one job by enhancing your cv with a resume builder. 

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