Child Labor Laws in Texas
Texas considers those under age 18 to be minors for the purposes of employment law, and state law applies to all businesses in the state — not just those subject to FLSA rules.
Minors in Texas are subject to wage and hour restrictions. In general, the minimum age to work in Texas is 14, except for some agriculture and entertainment occupations and where the parent is the employer of the minor in a non-hazardous occupation.
Other exemptions to the age 14 restriction include children in safe, casual employment, newspaper delivery by those 11 or older, those at least 16 selling newspapers to the public, minors in an approved school-supervised and administered work-study program, those in court-ordered rehabilitation programs, and minors not required to attend school or who are working in agriculture.
Anyone under 18 is banned from jobs deemed hazardous, and further restrictions on types of jobs apply to those aged 14 through 15 and those aged 16 through 17.
Likewise, limits on when minors can work and how long are broken down as those aged 14 and 15 and those aged 16 and up categories. Minors aged 16 and up have no restrictions on when they can work, but those aged 14 and 15 can not work when it would interfere with school hours. However, nothing in the child labor laws exempts minors from local truancy or curfew laws.
Minors are subject to alternative minimum wage rates in some cases. For the first 90 days of employment, employers may pay minors a $4.25 per hour sub-minimum wage. Also, in the case of apprentices, qualified student employees, and those working under a DOL special license, employers may be permitted to pay minors 85% of the minimum wage rate.