Summer Jobs and Employment Laws

Getting that first summer job can be an important time in a teenager’s life, with the opportunity for more financial freedom and a start toward independence.

And while many adults likely look back with some nostalgia on their first job and want to provide that experience for a new generation, there are specific rules to keep in mind when it comes to Montana’s child labor laws

Montana’s laws run parallel to federal laws protecting children, with federal law taking precedence. 

To start, no one 14 or younger can be hired, with a few exceptions (including agriculture work, newspaper delivery, volunteer work, and more). If an employer does hire a 14 or 15-year-old, the teens cannot work in hazardous jobs. They can’t work more than three hours on a school day, or more than 18 hours in a school week.

They also cannot legally operate power-driven equipment for casual lawn chores performed for owners of private residences, only hand-powered devices like rakes or shovels. Minors who 16 and 17 can use the power equipment for lawn chores but can’t use chainsaws or hedge trimmers. 

With so many legal requirements surrounding the employment of minors, it’s important to get it right. Our experienced attorneys at Terrazas Henkel P.C. can help you navigate these regulations, as either an employer or an employee. Give us a call at 406-541-2550 to set up an appointment.