Dept. of Labor: Even though Schools are Remote for Rest of Year, Labor Laws Still Apply Bookmark and Share

April 13, 2020

For Immediate Release: April 13, 2020

Dept. of Labor: Even though Schools are Remote for Rest of Year, Labor Laws Still Apply

AUGUSTA - The Maine Department of Labor is reminding the public that while the Department of Education has recommended that schools continue remote learning for the remainder of the school year, labor laws pertaining to minors still apply. School buildings may not be physically open; however, school is still considered to be in session since students are still expected to complete school assignments from home.

The following still apply for minors in the workplace:

Minors under 16 years old (A work permit is required, even if working in a parent owned business):

  • Work Hours
    • Between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. during the school year
    • Between 7 a.m. and 9 p.m. during summer vacations only
    • Not during school hours
  • Maximum Hours
    • 3 hours a day on school days, including Fridays
    • 18 hours in any week during a school week
    • 40 hours in a week with no school
    • 8 hours on days without school (during weekends, holidays, vacations, storm days, etc.)
    • No more than 6 days in a row

Work permits can be downloaded on our website:

16- and 17-Year Old Workers (enrolled in school, including home-school):

  • Work hours (may work)
    • After 7 a.m. on a school day
    • After 5 a.m. on a non-school day
    • Until 10:15 p.m. on a day before a school day
    • Until midnight if no school the next day
    • Minors under 17 may NOT work during school hours
  • Maximum hours (may work)
    • 6 hours on a school day
    • 8 hours on the last school day of the week - there are some exceptions for co-op (work-study) students, and students with an alternative education plan with a work component.
    • 10 hours a day on weekends, holidays, vacations, teacher workshops
    • 24 hours a week in any week with 3 or more school days.
    • 50 hours a week each week there are less than 3 scheduled school days or during 1st and last week of school year.
    • May NOT work more than 6 days in a row.


  • Students enrolled in an approved alternative education plan or an approved cooperative/vocational education program can work the daily or weekly hours required for the program without having those hours count toward the regular maximums allowed. For example, a 17-year-old student could work 15 hours under a cooperative/vocational education plan plus the 24 hours that the law would normally allow for a student under 18 years old.

It should also be noted that minors cannot work in occupations that are considered hazardous by the Maine Department of Labor and or U.S. Department of Labor.

More information can be found in our guide: