Work Permits

VA DOLI Logo Virginia Work Permits-Guide for the Employment of Teenagers

In Virginia, every teenager 14 or 15 years of age must have an employment certificate (work permit) to work a job. The only exceptions to this requirement are listed:

  1. On farms, in gardens and in orchards that are operated by parent or guardian
  2. Work around the home for parents or guardian
  3. Volunteer work
  4.  Non-manufacturing job where a parents owns the business
  5.  Page or clerk for either the House of Delegates or Senate of Virginia
  6. Occasional work around someone else’s home, such as yard work
  7. Work performed for state or local government

How to obtain a work permit?

The student must have a job lined up. “Blanket” work permits are not issued. Once a job is lined up, the student should come to the counseling office between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.

Once the job is lined up, two forms must be obtained from Ms. Clark or Mrs. Kolody.

  1. Intent to Employ. This form is filled out and signed by the employer.
  2. Permission for Employment. This form is filled out and signed in front of Ms. Clark or Mrs. Kolody.

Along with these two forms, the teenager should bring evidence of his or her age, such as;

  • Birth certificate
  • Baptismal record
  • Insurance policy
  • School record
  • Passport

When both forms are completed, the work permit can be issued. The student should keep their copy with them whenever they are working. If the student changes jobs, a new work permit must be issued (the whole process must be repeated).

There are many rules regarding hours of work and types of work students may perform. For example,

  • Students 14 and 15 may not work more than 40 hours in one week during the summer months, and not more than 18 hours a week during the school year. Students are not permitted to work past 7 p.m., except from June 1 – Labor Day, when they are permitted to work until 9 p.m. Students may not work five hours of continuous work without a 30-minute rest or meal period.
  • Students age 14 and older may work in restaurants, but no student may work in establishments where consumption of alcoholic beverages is the main business.

A complete list of permitted jobs are available at the Virginia Department of Labor and Industry:

If you have any questions regarding obtaining a work permit, please contact the Gunston Counseling Department at 703-228-6909. Additional information can be obtained by contacting:

Commonwealth of Virginia
Department of Labor and Industry
Division of labor and Employment Law
Northern Virginia Regional Office