Speak Up! - View Question #22676
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Question: is there anyway i can work when im 15?
Yes, within specific guidelines. Arizona has youth employment laws that were established to protect youth from being overworked. At one time, children were viewed as a source of cheap labor, so they were often worked and not allowed the freedom to play or go to school. Youth employment laws were created to protect children. The laws generally restrict the type of work you can do and the hours you can work. These laws can be found in the Arizona Revised Statutes, Chapter 2, Article 3. You are also protected under Federal law.
While the intent of the law was to “protect” youth under 18, the laws can also “restrict” youth who want or need to work. Generally you may work as long as you are not in a forbidden employment situation (although you cannot deliver newspapers if you are under the age of 10). The list of forbidden work is extensive, but generally involves heavy labor, operating heavy machinery, doing extensive driving, working long hours or working in a dangerous environment. You may also apply to the Industrial Commission of Arizona's Department of Labor for an exception to these laws under A.R.S. § 23-241.
However, even with an exception, sometimes employers who are not forbidden from hiring youth by law may have company policies or may be hesitant for insurance or liability reasons.