• Overview

    If you are aged 14-17 you will need an employment certificate, also called working papers, in order to hold a job in New York State.

    This rule covers:

    • High school graduates
    • Minors who work for their parents
    • Minors who do industrial homework

    Working papers are divided into two age groups (14-15 and 16-17):

    14-15-year-olds - Your working papers are blue. If you are 14 and 15 years old, you are issued these working papers because you are not allowed to work in a factory.


    Types of Working Papers

    Student Non-Factory Employment Certificate - AT-18 (Blue Paper)
    • Issued to youth ages 14 and 15 who plan to work at permitted occupations during vacations or after school hours
    • Not valid for work:
      • In factory workrooms or construction
      • Involving use of prohibited machinery or chemical processes
      • As a helper on a motor vehicle
      • Cleaning, oiling, wiping or adjusting belts to machinery




  • Getting Your Working Papers

    School officials issue all working papers, except for child performer permits.

    • If you are in school, go to your guidance office and ask for a working papers application. 
    • During school vacation periods, these offices stay open part-time to issue working papers.

    1.  Fill out the application and have your parent or guardian sign the application.

    2.  When you have filled out the working papers application and had your parent or guardian sign it, you have to take it back to the school's guidance office.


    What You Need

    You will need to have had a doctor's exam within the last 12 months saying you are physically fit. A physical given at a school for sports will count for your physical exam. If you are not sure where you can get a physical, ask your guidance office or call your doctor.

    You will also need official identification o that you can provide proof of age, such as your birth certificate, a state-issued photo ID, driver's license, or passport. Below is information on how to obtain important documents if you do not have them.