The Industrial Revolution caused an increased need for coal for machinery, which Illinois helped fill with children working in mines. The first law enacted regarding the employment of minors in Illinois was the Apprenticeship Law passed in 1819. Illinois currently has a binding agreement between employers and the state government to not interfere with education.
Currently the Illinois Child Labor Law states that those under the age of 14 are prohibited from working in order to protect their physical, mental, and emotional development. There are certain exceptions to this. Twelve to 13 year olds may officiate in youth sports. Thirteen year olds may serve as a golf caddy. Those under 14 may also do babysitting, yard work, and chores in residences.
A work permit is required for those in this age group. Minors who are 14 and 15 years old are allowed to work as busboys, dishwashers, or in culinary jobs as part of military veteran’s clubs, fraternities and private clubs. However, they may not be employed in organizations serving park districts, theme parks, arcades, or other amusement facilities.
Further specific restrictions for 14 and 15 year olds are the same as those for 16 and 17 years old, prohibiting work in a job considered a Hazardous Occupation. That list is provided below under Restrictions for 16 and 17 year olds.
The Illinois Laws also include the following restrictions for 14 and 15 year olds:
When public school in in session:
When public school is not in session:
There is no work permit required for this age group. . There are fewer restrictions on types of jobs which they are allowed to work. They may work in positions in general retail, fast food, fashion retail, department stores and customer service However, no minor 14 through 17 years of age may work in a Hazardous Occupation included below: