Child employment legislation
There are rules and regulations to safeguard children who have part time jobs and children who take part in entertainment. In Cheshire West and Chester, our Education Welfare Service is responsible for overseeing this legislation.
Where to find help
Information on UK law on child employment and legal definitions is available on the Gov.UK website.
To employ children of compulsory school age
Children can work from the age of 13 years.
Within seven days of the child starting work the employer must apply for a child employment licence (Word, 4MB) for every child who works for him / her, including his / her own children from the council that covers where they will work.
Within seven days of the child starting work the employer must apply for a child employment licence for every child who works for them, including their own children from the council that covers where they will work.
Further information and advice
Children in entertainment
The Law requires children under the upper limit of compulsory school age to be licensed by the council if involved in performances of all kinds, including:
- performing in theatres and other venues
- broadcasting and films
- paid modelling
- paid sport
Licences for all types of performances, including modelling must be applied for by the producer of the event or the model agency to the Local Authority where the child lives.
The application must be made on the Child Entertainment Licence application form and completed by the applicant and the parent. This must be returned to the Education Welfare Service at least 21 days before the event.
We may refuse to issue a licence under certain circumstances and therefore the child cannot take part in the event.
Time off school may only be authorised by a licence issued by the Education Welfare Service after consultation with the child’s head teacher.
Exemptions from licensing
Licensing is not required for performances organised under arrangements made by a:
- ‘Body of Persons’ - a Council approved group of people who are organising an event on an amateur basis
Licence free days
There is an exemption from Licensing available which allows a young person to perform on up to four days in any six month period.
Notifications of Licence Free Day approval can be made by completing our form:
Body of persons
Approval for exemption by the ‘body of persons’ must be sought from the Education Welfare Service at the local Area Education Office, where the performances are to take place. Written details on the appropriate Body of Persons application form will be required by the Education Welfare Services before final approval is given.
Chaperones in Entertainment
Children taking part in entertainment must be looked after by an adult chaperone, who is either the child's parent or a person approved by the Local Authority where the applicant lives.
If you are interested in becoming a chaperone in entertainment, please contact the Child Licensing Office for more information.