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How to Get a Work Permit in New Jersey
Getting a work permit in New Jersey is much easier than most teens think, but the entire process can be pretty confusing if you’ve never done it before. Because of this, we’ve created this page which outlines everything you need to know about getting a work permit in New Jersey. If you’re under the age of 16, a work permit is required to work part-time at any company, so follow what we’ve outlined here and you can get a job in no time.
Minimum Working Age in New Jersey
In New Jersey, 90% of the state’s residents live in an urban area, making New Jersey the state with the highest urban population in the United States. Those living in these urban areas, including the teenagers, are seeking opportunity with the businesses in the area. Fortunately, the minimum age for minors to be employed in New Jersey is 14 and all minors under the age of 18 must have an employment certificate or “working papers” in order to begin working. Luckily, the process to obtain an employment certificate is straightforward. Click here for more information on teen labor laws in New Jersey.
Applying For a Work Permit in New Jersey
All minors that are seeking employment must obtain an employment certificate or “working papers” prior to beginning a job. To obtain the employment certificate, the minor should follow the process below:
- The minor should first seek a job. Once they find an employer who is willing to hire them, they should get the form titled “A300 employment certification form” which can be found here . The minor can also access a copy of this form the New Jersey Department of Education, the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development, or the Issuing Officer of the local school district.
- The minor will complete Section A, which asks for their personal information, to include: social security number, date of birth and gender. The minor’s parent or guardian will sign authorizing the employment of their child.
- The minor will take the form to the employer who has offered to hire them. The employer will complete Section B, which includes employment information like type of business and hours the minor will work. The employer will have to sign where it states “Promise of Employment”.
- The minor must have a physical exam or obtain a note from a doctor. Should they have the physical exam, the school district is responsible for providing this at no cost to the minor. A physical exam conducted during their freshman year will be sufficient in most cases through all four years of high school. The physician will complete and sign Section C. Should a parent or guardian object in writing to their child having a physical exam based on religious beliefs and practices, the minor will not be required to obtain the physical exam.
- The minor must have someone from their school complete Section E, which is regarding their school record. Should the Issuing Officer be at their school, that individual can complete that section. Otherwise, the minor should bring it to the appropriate official at their school and have it completed before bringing the form to the School Issuing Officer.
- The minor will bring the form along with proof of age (to include a birth certificate, passport, baptismal certificate, or school record of age along with the above date of birth) to the School Issuing Officer. The school official will review the form and issue the certificate once they are satisfied that the work and hours will not get in the way of the minor’s education or harm their health.
- Once the minor is issued the employment certificate, the Issuing Officer will mail a copy to the employer for their records.
Transferring Work Permits in New Jersey
The employment certificate is for a particular position with a specific employer. Should a minor under the age of 18 decide to obtain a new position, they would need to obtain a new employment certificate.
Employer Responsibility With Work Permits in New Jersey
Should an employer in New Jersey decide to hire a minor under the age of 18, they must obtain an employment certificate prior to the minor beginning work. The role of the employer in regards to employment certificates is very straightforward. Employers have the following responsibilities in regards to the employment certificate:
- The employer must complete Section B of the “A300 employment certification form” and sign where the form states “Promise of Employment”.
- Once the employer receives the employment certificate that is mailed by the Issuing Officer, the employee can begin work. The employer must keep the employment certificate on file.
- Where any minor under 18 is employed, the employer must post in an obvious location in the place of employment a list of occupations prohibited to minors as well as a schedule of hours of labor with the name of each minor, to include the maximum amount of hours the minor will be allowed to work during each day of the week, the total number of hours per week, the time that the employee would stop and start work each day and their meal period. The employer may allow the minor to begin work later than noted and finish earlier than noted, but cannot allow the minor to work hours outside the posted schedule.
- The schedule described above is required to be on a form that is provided by the Department of Labor.
- The employer must keep a record that states the name, birth date and address of each individual under the age of 19 who they employ. The record must also include the number of hours each person worked on each day of the week, the hours of work, the meal period and the wages paid. The record must be kept for at least one year after the day recorded and is to be made available for inspection upon request.
- Should the employment of the minor end, the employer must return the certificate to the Issuing Officer within two days of the termination of employment.
- The employer must follow child labor laws.
Employers in New Jersey who hire minors under the age of 18 must receive an employment certificate prior to the minor being able to begin work. The process of obtaining the certificate is not difficult and the employer does not have a large role in helping the minor receive it.
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- A300 Employment Certification
- Instructions for School Issuing Officers
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- All minors under the age of 18 who work in New Jersey must have an employment certificate – also called “working papers” or a special permit (for agriculture, newspaper carrier, or theatrical employment).
- An employment certificate is required for each employer.
Beginning October 2012, minors may obtain a blank A300 employment certification form from either the NJ Department of Education or from the NJ Department of Labor and Workforce Development. Minors may continue to obtain a blank employment certification from the Issuing Officer of the local school district where the minor resides.
After the minor completes the personal information on the employment certification, the minor takes the form to the employer to complete the employment information and Promise of Employment.
Physician’s Certification – The minor then must have a physical or obtain a doctor’s note. The school district is responsible for performing the physical examination at no cost to the minor. A school physical (including a sports physical) performed during freshman year is good for all four year of high school (unless the school district policy specifies more frequent physicals).
If the minor’s parent/guardian prefers their child to be examined by a doctor other than the one employed by the school district, they may do so at their own expense. A minor is not required to obtain a physical if the parent/guardian objects (in writing) based on their religious beliefs and practices.
Proof of Age – If the school does not have a copy on file, the minor may be asked to provide a birth certificate, passport, baptismal certificate or other identification documentation to the School Issuing Officer.
Parent/Guardian Authorization – The parent/guardian must indicate his/her authorization of the minor’s employment as specified in the employment information section.
School Record/Issuing Officer Certification – The minor must bring the completed certification to their school district. A designated school official will review the form and issue the employment certificate only after being satisfied that the working conditions and hours will not interfere with the minor’s education or damage the minor’s health. The school official may refuse to issue the employment certificate if such refusal would be in the minor’s best interest.
Special Permits for Agriculture, Newspaper Carriers, or Theatrical Employment
Depending on the age of the minor and whether the minor will be working in agriculture, newspaper carriers, or theatrical employment, the minor may need to obtain a special permit ( A310 Combined Certification Form for Agriculture, Newspaper Carrier, Street Trades or Theatrical Employment). The minor must obtain this permit from the Issuing Officer of the local school district where the minor resides. If the minor is not a New Jersey resident, the A310 special permit can be obtained from the district in which the minor has obtained a promise of employment.
- Agriculture (minimuim age – 12 years old)
12 thru 15 years old – Special Agriculture Permit
- Newspaper Carriers (minimum age – 11 years old)
11 thru 15 years old – Special Newspaper Carrier Permit
16 & 17 years old – Employment Certificate
- Theatrical (minimum age – None)
Under 16 years old – Special Theatrical Permit
16 & 17 years old – Employment Certificate
Age Certificate (issued to 18 to 21 years old)
A young worker between 18 and 21 years may need to obtain an age certificate (included on the A300) Employment Certificate because the employer is requesting proof of age. The young worker must complete the Minor’s Personal Information on the employment certification form and show a birth certificate, passport, baptismal certificate, or other identification if the school does not already have a copy on file.
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