Protecting Employers Since 1985

January 2013

By: Jennifer Adams Murphy, Esq.

The Child Labor Law, Part II – Certification Requirements

820 ILCS 205

Fact of the Month

The Child Labor Law requires more than the signature of a parent or legal guardian for a minor’s application for an employment certificate. Section 12 of the Child Labor Law lists the documentation that must be included with a minor’s application for an employment certificate. See 820 ILCS 205/12.

Test Your Knowledge

Last month’s Test Your Knowledge section covered the Child Labor Law’s prohibition component. This month’s edition will cover the Child Labor Law’s certification requirements.

1. When we left off, Mallory’s MO’s Grocery had recently hired Scott (age 15) to bag groceries on the weekend. Before Scott can begin work, however, what document does the Child Labor Law require Mallory to have?

A. A note signed by one of Scott’s parents or a legal guardian stating that Scott has permission to work for MO’s Grocery.

B. Scott’s most recent report card.

C. An employment certificate.

D. All of the above.

2. Mallory tells Scott that before he can begin working for her, he needs to get an employment certificate. Where should Scott go to get the employment certificate?

A. The City or County Superintendent of Schools.

B. Scott’s parents or a legal guardian.

C. The Department of Labor’s website.

D. Facebook.

3. In accordance with the Law, Mallory receives an original copy of the employment certificate from Scott’s Superintendent and Mallory schedules him to work. Noticing the overwhelming pile of papers on her desk, she entertains the idea of tossing the employment certificate in the recycling container. Should she dispose of the employment certificate?

4. Over his first few months of employment, Scott shows that he is a hard worker. One of the essential functions of Scott’s job is to stock shelves when there are no groceries to bag. This requires Scott to carry big heavy boxes from the back storage area. Scott is not the biggest or brawniest fellow and this heavy lifting is causing numerous back problems. His parents are concerned that Scott’s job is causing too much harm to his back. Can they petition to revoke his employment certificate?


Question 1: C. See 820 ILCS 205/9.

Question 2: A. See 820 ILCS 205/11(a). Employment certificates must be issued by the City or County Superintendent of Schools or by their duly authorized agents.

Question 3: No. Under the Law, every employer employing an employee under the age of 16 must keep the employee’s employment certificate on file at the place of employment. See 820 ILCS 205/13.

Question 4: Yes. A parent or legal guardian (or school principal) can ask for the revocation of the employment certification by petitioning the Department of Labor in writing, stating the reasons they believe that the employment is interfering with the best physical, intellectual or moral development of the minor. See 820 ILCS 205/11(a).

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