Legal Age to Work in Hawaii

Minimum Age to Work in HI

Hawaii (HI) Quick Reference Table
AgeSummary of Requirements
14-15Must work between 7:00am and 7:00pm, no more than six consecutive days, and no more than eighteen hours in a week. Cannot work more than three hours on any school day.
16-17Must work between 7:00am and 7:00pm, no more than six consecutive days, and no more than eighteen hours in a week. Cannot work more than three hours on any school day.
18-20Must be 18 to work in establishments that sell or serve alcohol for consumption
21Able to serve alcohol for consumption. No restrictions.

Hawaii Child Labor Laws

Employment as a minor in Hawaii carries several stipulations. In most cases, the Hawaiian workforce requires minors to stand at least 14 years of age. Minors must also obtain special youth labor permits for their age group.

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Hawaii Youth Work Permits

The state of Hawaii divides work permits into categories based on age. Workers aged 14 and 15 must apply for Certificates of Employment. Individuals aged 16 and 17 must apply for Certificates of Age in order to legally hold jobs in the State of Hawaii. Here is some information on how to get a work permit in the summer.

  • Do you need a work permit during summer?

Yes. All employees under 18 must have working papers in Hawaii.

  • Where can I get a work permit besides school?

Minors and employers can find certificates of employment through the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations website.

  • How to get a work permit during summer

    • Find the DLIR website online.
    • Choose the necessary application for the minor’s age group.
      • Certificate of Employment (14-15)
    • Download and fill out the application
      • The minor, their legal guardian and their potential employer must fill out the document.
    • Submit the completed form to the DLIR office via email, fax or in person.
      • Certificate of Age (16-17)
    • Fill out personal information about minor’s name, date of birth, address, etc.
    • Submit the form to register minor’s info with the DLIR and receive a Certificate of Age
      • Minors can present this document to a potential employer in order to start work. Certain employers may ask for a second proof of age certificate before hiring a teenager.

Acceptable Proofs of Age in Hawaii

  • Hawaii Driver’s License
  • Driver’s Permit from Another U.S. State
  • Official Birth Certificate
  • State-Issued Identification
  • Military Identification
  • Passport
  • Working Visa
  • Official School Transcript
  • Official Hospital Records
  • Court Documents
  • Baptismal Records

Restrictions on Hours

The amount of hours a minor can legally work depends on the teen’s age. Individuals under 16 must follow state guidelines on restricted work hours, while older teens are exempt from these rules.

How Many Hours Can a 14 or 15 Year Old Work in Hawaii?

During school days, the State of Hawaii only allows minors aged 14 and 15 to work up to three hours between the hours of 7:00am and 7:00pm. On days when school is not in session, the hours restrictions lessen to allow for eight hours of work per day between 6:00am and 9:00pm. By law, employers must provide 30 minutes away from responsibilities for every five consecutive hours worked. Child labors laws in the state also prohibit the scheduling of minors more than six consecutive days in a single week.

Special Exemptions and Prohibited Occupations

Employment in Entertainment
Hawaiian youth labor laws include special provisions regarding the entertainment industry. These regulations apply to individuals under 14 who work in film, theater, radio and television. Minors working in the entertainment industry must obtain consent from a parent or guardian, and file the approval with the director or organizer of the performance or act.  This individual must then agree to constantly supervise the minors, and ensure that their performance tasks will not affect their academic schedule. All these children must also have a Certificate of Employment on file.

The state outlines specific rules for minors working in the entertainment industry regarding hours of employment. Minors six and under must not work past 7:30pm. On non-school nights, workers between the ages of 6 and 14 may not work past 10:30pm. Minors aged 14 to 17 must stop working by 11:30pm. On days preceding school days, labor laws cap work days at 8:30pm and 9:30pm for minors six to fourteen and minor 14 to 17, respectively. Work and school hours should amount to ten or fewer hours a day for all minors. Other stipulations include:

  • Two-hour work days for kids six and under
  • Three-hour work days for kids six to 10
  • Four-hour work days for minors 10 to 14
  • Eight or fewer hour work days for minors aged 14 to 17

Coffee Harvesting

Processed coffee for human consumption ranks as a chief Hawaiian export. With so many young workers in this field, the state legislature has several laws to ensure the safety and academic integrity of minors working for coffee harvesting companies. These minors must be at least ten years of age, and work under the direct supervision of their parent or guardian.

Law Laws pertaining to coffee harvesting in Hawaii also includes include the following provisions restricting hours minors may work in the industry.

  • Minors aged ten to 14 may only work between 6:00am and 6:00pm
    • Must receive a 15 minute break every two hours, and one-hour breaks for every four hours of harvesting.
    • May work up to six hours per day, and 30 hours per week
    • Must work less than six days in a row
  • Minors must adhere to state limitations on the tools they can use and environments they can work in.
    • Must avoid processing equipment
      • Heavy machinery and motor vehicles
    • May only relocate items weighing less than 15lbs

Pineapple Harvesting

The state allows for individuals as young as 15 years of age to participate in the pineapple harvesting profession; however, the age group must adhere to Hawaiian youth labor laws. Workers 16 and over remain exempt from the special statutes and fall under traditional law for employment as minors in the state.

  • 15 year olds may only work for up to 48 hours per week
    • May work eight hours a day during summer
    • May work between 6:00am and 12:30am the following morning
  • Minors must avoid tasks involving cultivating and harvesting machinery
  • Minors must only work in well-lit areas
  • Minors must be under supervision at all times
  • Minors must wear protective gloves, eyewear and clothing at all times
  • For jobs that continue past 9:00pm, minors must procure transportation and written consent from their legal guardian

Non-Profit/Religiously Affiliated Jobs for Teens
In many cases, minors may perform non-hazardous tasks of a charitable or religious nature. The laws allow for minors to perform volunteer work so long as school and work schedules do not conflict. The state requires the religious, non-profit, or charitable employers to provide proper proofs of legal existence as non-commercial entities.

Restricted Occupations for Minors in Hawaii

Like most states, Hawaii restricts youths from working hazardous or potentially dangerous occupations. The list below represents the jobs for teenagers restricted by the State of Hawaii:

  • Operating a motor vehicle
  • Work exposing minors to radiation or ionizing substances
  • Using power tools
  • Meatpacking
  • Slaughterhouse jobs
  • Operating heavy machinery
  • Manufacturing jobs
  • Using circular and band saws
  • Demolition
  • Mining and excavation
  • Logging and mill work
  • Agricultural work
    • Except for coffee and pineapple harvesting
  • Maintenance and repair of mechanical equipment
  • Public messenger services
  • Warehouse work
  • Transportation of goods
source: Hawaii child labor laws source: Certificate of age information

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