Massachusetts Child Labor in Agriculture & Farming
Child labor laws on Massachusetts and Federal levels have special provisions that apply to minors working in the agricultural industry, including working as farm hands, harvesting fruit or vegetables, etc. In many states, agricultural child labor laws focus on safety and tend to be less restrictive in terms of working hours than general child labor regulations.
In most cases, agricultural child labor laws do not apply to children working on their family's farm. Many traditionally agricultural states have less restrictive child labor laws in this area.
Massachusetts Agricultural Child Labor Age RestrictionsAccording to Massachusetts state law, the minimum age at which a minor may work in agriculture during school hours is 14 with certification. The minimum age at which a minor may work in agriculture outside of school hours is 14 with certification.
Minor Employment Certificate Requirements in MassachusettsAn employment certificate is required by Massachusetts state law for minors working in agriculture under the age of 18. Age certification is required for minors working in agriculture who are under the age of 18.
Massachusetts Agricultural Child Labor Restrictions on Working Hours
Maximum Working Hours for Minors Under 16
During a schoolday or week up to 4 hours a day and 24 hours per week of work are permitted, for minors under 14 a maximum of 8 hours a day and up to 48 hours per week are permitted.
Massachusetts specifies the following as the maximum days per week in which a minor under 16 can perform agricultural work: 6
Nightwork Regulations for Minors Under 16
Nightwork is prohibited for minors under age 16 during the following time windows: 7 p.m. (9 p.m. July 1 through Labor Day) to 6:30 a.m.
Prohibited Hazardous Agricultural Occupations for Minors
For workers under 16 operation of a saw or cutter on a farm except family farm as well as stripping, sorting, manufacturing or packing tobacco are considered hazardous occupations.
Other Massachusetts Child Labor Laws
In addition to laws specifically regulating minors employed in the agricultural industry, Massachusetts law has a variety of regulations that cover child labor in general. To learn more, see Massachusetts child labor laws.