Montana Child Labor Laws Montana Child Labor Laws 2024

Child labor laws on Montana and <a href="/federal/child-labor-laws">Federal</a> levels exist to prevent the exploitation of minors for labor, and ensure that education is prioritized over work. Limitations on child labor vary by age, and may include restrictions on the types of work that can be done, maximum hours that may be worked, and limitations on late or overnight work.

Regulation of child labor may include the use of Employment Certificates issued by the minor's school or the state Labor Department, and/or an Age Certification document that verifies the minor's age for work purposes. This page details Montana's child labor law regulations.

Mandatory Employment & Age Certification for Minors

Employment Certificates in Montana

Employment Certificates, also known as Work Permits, are not required in order for minors to work under Montana law. Employers are still responsible for ensuring that they comply with all Montana child labor restrictions and regulations.

In Montana, no certificate is required at any age for employment in a nonhazardous environment. Since minors under 16 may not work in hazardous employment, certificates for this age category are not deemed necessary.

Age Certification in Montana

Age certification is a process through which minors provide proof of their age to a prospective employer, which helps ensure that all child labor laws mandated for their age bracket are followed.

Age certification is mandatory for employment in Montana for minors 16 and over: in hazardous occupations, provided optionally in other occupations. Proper proof-of-age documentation must be must be acquired by the minor and presented to their employer to verify their age before they are hired.

Acquiring an Age Certificate in Montana:

Under Montana law, age certification for minors is carried out by the Montana Department of Labor.

Minor Working Hour Restrictions in Montana

Minors who are authorized to work in Montana are subject to restrictions on when they can work, and how many hours they can work. The exact restrictions in effect depend on the age of the minor, and are designed to ensure that work does not interfere with the minor's schooling.

Maximum Hours of Work for Minors

Working hour restrictions limit how many hours a minor may work per day, and per week.

For Minors Under 16:

Maximum hours/days when school is not in session: 8 hours daily / 40 hours weekly/ 6 days weekly.

Maximum hours/days when school is in session: 3 hours daily/ 18 hours weekly.

Students of 14 and 15 enrolled in approved Work Experience and Career Exploration programs may work during school hours up to 3 hours on a school day and 23 hours in a schoolweek.

For Minors Ages 16 and 17:

Montana has no restrictions on maximum working hours for minors aged 16 and 17.

Nightwork Restrictions for Minors

Nightwork restrictions set limits on how late a minor can legally work.

For Minors Under 16:

Work is prohibited during these hours: 7 p.m. (9 p.m. during periods outside the school year (June 1 through Labor Day, depending on local standards)) to 7 a.m.

For Minors Ages 16 and 17:

Montana has no restrictions on nightwork for minors aged 16 and 17.

Special Child Labor Laws in Montana

In addition to laws requiring work certificates or age verification for general employment of minors, most states have special regulations governing the employment of minors in agriculture (such as farm work and harvesting), and the entertainment industry (including child actors, models, and performers).

To learn about these special child labor laws in Montana, see the following pages.

On a Federal level, child labor is regulated under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Minors and students may additionally be subject to special labor law regulations regarding minimum wage, meal and break periods while working, and more.

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