Whether you’re filming a commercial or a feature length film, you’ll need to request entertainment work permits from all minors you’ve cast for your roles. As a result of decades of legislative advances towards protecting children from exploitation and unsafe working conditions across all industries, Child Entertainment Laws are now almost universal across all 50 states with only minor differences. Here’s a guide to help you navigate Entertainment Work Permits for Minors and familiarize you with all the necessary laws and regulations.
What are Entertainment Work Permits?
Permits are legal documents that set out work requirements and rules for working with minors. They aim to protect child talent from exploitation, unfair hours and unsafe working conditions. They stipulate rules for the amount of hours that the child can work for, access to food and water, restrooms, total amount of working hours within 24 hours and so much more.
Who is Required to Have Them?
Every minor is required to have a work permit in order to work on a set. A minor’s parent or guardian must apply for the permit themselves before they begin working. Even if a minor travels to, let’s say, California in order to film a project, they are still required to apply for a work permit in that state regardless of their state of origin.
Which Types of Permits are Available?
There are two types of work permits available:
- A temporary permit
- An entertainment work permit
The difference between temporary permits and standard entertainment work permits is that temporary permits are only valid for 10 days and are suitable for minors just exploring working in the entertainment industry. If you’ve never requested an entertainment work permit for your child talent, then this one will be your first.
How Long are They Valid For?
The standard Entertainment Work Permit is valid for 6 months and must be renewed every 6 months to remain valid. A parent or a guardian of the minor can apply for the permit on the Department of Industrial Relations of your State, in this case, California: https://www.dir.ca.gov/dlse/entertainment-work-permit.htm
DLSE suggests applying at least 6 weeks prior to your current permit expiring to allow time for processing. Parents or guardians must obtain an authorized school official’s certification stating that the minor’s attendance, health, and scholastic records are satisfactory in order to receive the permit.
When are Parents/Guardians Obligated to Have Them?
Once the parent or guardian has had their permit approved and mailed to them, productions will request a scan or a picture of it prior to booking the job. Once on set, they will need to bring the original copy with them for every day of shooting in order for the welfare workers/teachers to sign it.
Things to Keep in Mind
Know that along with having necessary work permits for the child talent, you are also obligated to provide a welfare worker/teacher to all minors during their time on set. Depending on whether school is in session, you will need to have 1 teacher per 10 minors, or 1 per 20 if it isn’t.
Though there is a lot of paperwork to go through, there hasn’t been a better time to work with child talent. With millions of kids exploring acting and modeling for the first time on casting networks like kidscasting.com, it’s a lot easier to find that perfect match for your commercial production. Browse millions of quality profiles, contact your chosen talent and have your casting needs met without a hitch! Go to kidscasting.com to know more!