Copyright 2012 Wynn Enterprise/Star Production.


Q: Is my child's school required to issue them a work permit

A: No. It is within the discretion of each school district to determine wheter a minor, who is still subject to the state's compulsory education laws, may obtain a work permit and, therefore be employed to work. 


Q: My child graduated from high school or has passed the California High School Proficiency Exam, do they still need a work permit?

A: No. Once a minor is no longer subject to the state's compulsory education laws he/she is not considered a minor for purposes of the state's child labor laws and is not required to obtain a work permit.


Q: My child is not a resident of California nor are they enrolled in a school district in CA, do they still need a work permit?

A: Yes. Any minor wishing to work in California must adhere to the state's work standards and regulations, even if they are not a permanent or full time resident of California.  If a minor is from out of state, his/her most recent report card or letter from the school principal, on school letterhead, stating minor is “Satisfactory” in all academic subjects, health and attendance is required with the work permit application.


Q: May a minor who is truant or a dropout obtain a work permit?

A: No. A truant or dropout is in violation of California's compulsory school attendance laws, and a school is not permitted to sanction violation of those laws by issuing a work permit.


Q: My child is emancipated, do they still need a work permit?

A: Yes. Emancipation only means the child has the right to become independent from his/her parents. If the child has not completed their high school requirements for graduation, they will still require a work permit.


Q: How can it be determined whether a minor is an independent contractor or an employee?

A: to be classified as an "Independent contractor", the person needs to be licensed or certified in a particular expertise, and have specialty skills, and the service is not offered through the employer. This excludes a minor from independent contracting employment. A work permit is only issued to minors who have an employer and they are accepting the responsibilities of the minor as their employee.


According to the DLSE, employers often times improperly classify their employees as "independent contractors" so that they, the employer, do not have to pay payroll taxes, minimum wage, overtime, or comply with the wage and hour law requirements such as providing meal periods and rest breaks, or reimburse their workers for business expenses incurred in performing their jobs. Additionally, employers do not have to cover independent contractors disability insurance, or social security. The definition and requirements of independent contractors eliminates minors from employment.

Q: What happens when I turn in the work permit to my child's school?

A: The schools authorized work permit issuer shall verify all information on the work permit to be issued. If all requirements are met, the authorized work permit issuer may issue the work permit. Often times it will have to be signed by the principal and the students teacher along with being stamped by the the school official seal. 


The local school district or school also has the right to impose additional requirements for the issuance of a work permit. For instance, the school may have a policy requiring the minor to obtain a 2.0 GPA or higher. 


Q: My child is home schooled, do they still need a work permit?

A: Yes. EC Section 49110 authorizes school officials in the school district your child lives in to issue work permits to eligible students. The parents/guardian to the homeschooled minor must complete the application and attach a current private school affidavit, or written verification indicating that the minor is “satisfactory” in all academic subjects, health and attendance from either the local school district, county office of education or state board of education where the minor lives.


Q: Are work permits required during the summer?

A: Yes. According to the California Labor Code Section 1299  and Education Code Section 49160, work permits are required for California working minors.


Q: When are California minors exempt from work permits?

A:  These are just a few that pertain to the entertainment industry. To see a listing of other times a permit isn't required, so the FAQ listed on the California Department of Education Website.


  • When the minor has graduated from high school

  • When the minor has been awarded a certificate of proficiency, better known as the California High School Proficiency Examination (CHSPE)

  • When the minor has been awarded a certificate of equivalency, better known as the General Education Development (GED)


Q: What is the requirement for obtaining a work permit when school is in session vs when school is not in session?

A:  When ever school is IN SESSION, the application must be completed by an authorized school official and dated no more than a month prior to submitting the application. When ever school is NO IN SESSION, such as summer break, Easter Break, Christmas Break, minors recent report card will be accepted. Grades must be a C or above, the DSLE does not use GPA's. 


Q: Where do I get an Entertainment Work Permit Application

A: You can get one by going to this web address and make sure to include a Self-Stamped envelope for the them to return the approved permit for the child. Make sure to follow all the instructions at the back of the form.

Or click here to print the form:



Q: My child is in kindergarten, do they still need to get their work permit signed by their school?

A: No . The requirement for non school age children, which is 15 days through kindergarten is (1) a copy of their birth certificate OR (2) Baptismal Certificate OR (3) Official letter from the hospital where they were born OR (4) Passport. 


If you infant is under one month of age they must have a certification from a licensed physician and surgeon who is Board Certified in pediatrics certifying that the infant is at least 15 days old, was carried to full term, and is physically able to endure the stresses of a television or movie set.


Q: How long do permits last?

A: Permits last for 6 months for as long as the minor is under the age of 18 and must be renewed following the same steps you used to obtain an original permit.


Q: Are entertainment work permits free?

A: Yes. you can mail the application below.  Website:

DLSE - Entertainment Work Permits

1515 Clay St. 

Oakland, CA. 94612

Q: I was told it cost $50 to get a work permit, is that true?

A: There is a 10 Day temporary work permit that cost $50. To get more information


This is a one-time temporary permit which is issued immediately** without the birth certificate or school approval normally required for a 6 month Entertainment Work Permit. There is a $50.00 fee for this permit. The other conditions to receive this permit are as follows:

  • It is only available to minors at least 15 days old and under 16 years old

  • It is only available to a minor whose parent or guardian has not previously applied for an Entertainment Work Permit.

  • It is only available to a minor who has not previously been issued an Entertainment Work Permit


Q: What is the definition of a minor according to California?

A: Definition of a Minor [Section 11750] A minor, in accordance with the California Labor Code [Section 1286 9c)], is any person under the age of 18 ears of age who is subject to California compulsory education law. Minors who have a high school education or its equivalent are exempt from the regulations. However, emancipated minors are not necessarily exempt from the regulations, since emancipation does not automatically exempt a minor from the compulsory education laws. An emancipated minor is not required to obtain parental consent to work. A work permit must still be obtained. The only minors exempt from work permit requirements are those with a high school education or its equivalent. Q: Are there specific working hours a child with a work permit is permitted to work?A: Yes, see following chart