Child Labor

South Carolina Regulations


Generally no employment is authorized for minors under the age of 14, as interpreted under South Carolina Child Labor Statute 41-13-20. Employment of any minor under age 14 is defined as oppressive child labor.

Exemptions from this restriction apply under the following specific circumstances:

1. Minors under age 14 may work in any aspect of show business, such as acting or performing in a theatrical, television, radio, or film production.

2. Minors ages 12 and 13 may work during non-school sessions in non-hazardous farm jobs with written parental consent.

Minors ages 12 and 13 may engage in farm labor at any agricultural establishment at which the minor's parents are employed.

3. At any age, minors may work in any business or establishment which is 100 percent owned and operated by the parent of the minor.


Minors age 15 must work within prescribed scheduling restrictions, as outlined below.

  • Normal school sessions include all days in which the school observes a standard academic calendar.
  • During normal school sessions, minors age 15 may work a maximum of three hours per day, up to 18 hours per week. Work hours must fall within the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Minors who attend school should anticipate a work schedule of 3:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., for example, in order to comply with these hourly restrictions.
  • During non-school sessions (i.e., summer vacations), minors age 15 may work up to eight hours per day, 40 hours per week. Work schedules for non-school sessions must fall between the hours of 7 a.m. and 9 p.m.
  • Appropriate employment for minors age 15 includes, but is not limited to: cashiering, serving food, custodial duties, bussing tables, car washing, and delivery work not involving the operation of a motor vehicle.
  • Minors age 15 may not engage in the following work activities: warehousing and storage; car repair; public utility duties; work involving the use of ladders or scaffolding; work involving food preparation; the use of grinders; or the operation of lawnmower and golf carts.


Minors ages 16 and older are exempt from the hour and scheduling restrictions.

These minors may work as many daily and weekly hours as the job responsibilities require or the employer requests.


If you are 16 or 17 years old, you may not work the following jobs deemed hazardous occupations:

1. Manufacturing or storing explosives

2. Driving a motor vehicle and being an outside helper

3. Coal mining

4. Logging and sawmilling

5. Power-driven woodworking machines

6. Exposure to radioactive substances and to ionizing radiations

7. Power-driven hoisting apparatus

8. Power-driven metal-forming, punching, and shearing machines

9. Mining, other than coal mining

10.Meat packing or processing

11.Power-driven bakery machines

12.Power-driven paper products machines

13.Manufacturing brick, tile, and related products

14.Power-driven circular saws, band saws, and guillotine shears

15.Wrecking, demolition, and ship-breaking operations

16.Roofing operations

17.Excavation operations