April 20, 2019

Work Permits

Child Labor Law Regulates the employment of workers under 16 years of age. The law protects children by:

  1. requiring employment certificates. The certificate confirms that a minor is old enough to work, physically capable to perform the job, and that the job will not interfere with the minor’s education;
  2. prohibiting work in hazardous occupations; and
  3. limiting working hours. All work before 7 a.m. and after 7 p.m. is prohibited. However, work until 9 p.m. is allowed from June 1 through Labor Day.

If your child is a student at Moline/Coal Valley School District, East Moline School District, Rock Island/Milan School District, Carbon Cliff-Barstow School District, United Township High School District, Riverdale CUSD, Sherrard CUSD, Rockridge CUSD, Hampton School District, Silvis School District, and all Private Schools you will need to contact the administration office of your childs school district to obtain a work permit.

Steps For Obtaining A Work Permit

All children under the age of sixteen are considered minors in the state of Illinois and are required by law to obtain a work permit prior to working in a motion picture, television show, commercial, music video, or any other film or video related production activity. Please note that the permit is valid for one year.

The following documentation must be presented in person by both the minor, as well as their parent or legal guardian when applying for a work permit:

  1. Statement of Prospective Employer
    • Proof of Age:
      A certified copy of a birth certificate issued by a city, county, state, or a hospital is required.  (Xerox copies are not acceptable.)  If a certified copy of the birth certificate is not available, any one of the following will be accepted as documentary proof of age:

      Baptismal Certificate
      Insurance Policy*
      Alien Registration Card
      Bible Record*
      Notice of Birth Registration
      Other Documentary Proof of Age*

      *These documents must be at least one year old to be acceptable
      NOTE: If the applicant’s name on the Statement of Prospective Employer differs from that shown on the proof of age presented, the parent or guardian must complete an affidavit.  Affidavit forms are available from the Department of Truancy Prevention, 125 South Clark, Suite 1016, Chicago, IL 60603.

  2. Social Security Number: The minor’s social security number must be provided when applying for the work permit. Proof of this is either the actual Social Security card or a copy of the application for a Social Security card.
  3. Medical Statement: A written statement from a physician must be presented which indicates that on the basis of an examination performed within one year of the date of the application that the child is physically fit to be employed in all legal occupations.
  4. Principal’s Statement: During the school year, if the applicant is age six or older, the applicant’s home school must supply this Principal Statement stating that the minor is a full-time student and the hours the child is in school and signed by the principal.

Work Rules

These rules apply to any minor working on a motion picture, television show, commercial, music video, or any related film/video production activity.
  1. Work Permit. A valid Illinois work permit must be issued prior to employment.
  2. Supervision. A minor must be accompanied by a parent/guardian while on set.
  3. Meal Break. A minor must receive a 1/2 hour meal break after five (5) hours on the set.
  4. Normal Work Day Hours. The normal work day is between the hours of 7 AM and 7 PM from Labor Day to June 1, and 7 AM to 9 PM June 1 to Labor Day. Any filming activity before or after these hours requires a night work waiver. (See Waivers below)
  5. Rest Break (Turn Around). A minor must be provided a twelve (12) hour rest break at the end of the workday and prior to the commencement of their next day of work or school.
  6. Facilities. All minors must be provided with separate and adequate facilities for rest, schooling, and recreation. Waivers

Night Filming

A waiver may be obtained for night filming activity after 7 PM from Labor Day to June 1, and after 9 PM from June 1 to Labor Day.

Night Waiver Application

The form must be completed and signed by the parent/guardian then submitted via fax at 312-814-1210 or to the following address by 12 PM on the day of filming (In the case of weekend filming it must be submitted by 12 PM on Friday)

Attention: Compliance Processing Manager

Illinois Department of Labor
Compliance Processing Department
160 North LaSalle Street 13th Floor
Chicago, Illinois 60601
Phone: 312-793-2804

NOTE: There is no waiver for extending the minor’s workday

Stunts & Athletic or Acrobatic Activity

No minor shall perform any stunts, unusual athletic or acrobatic activity unless the minor and the parent/guardian represent that the minor is capable of performing such activity and the parent/guardian give prior consent in writing.

Hazardous Activities

No minor shall be required to work in any hazardous situation that places them in a clear and present danger to life and limb, regardless of any parental consent.
*The above provisions are taken from: ACT 205, CHILD LABOR LAW, 820ILLS 205/1 ET SEQ., and the publication “Child Labor Laws and Rules and Regulations: Street Trade Laws.”

Contact Numbers

  • Child Labor Information: (312) 793-2804
  • Child Labor HOTLINE: (800) 645-5784 (toll free)


View Frequently Asked Questions.


After the work permit is issued, it will be valid for a one year period and it is only valid for the specific job/employer in which it was issued for.
If you have any questions, please contact IDOL at 312-793-2804.