Get a youth employment permit

Get a youth employment permit

Employers must get a permit if an employee aged 12 to 14 years will be working in a job that’s not approved by Alberta Employment Standards.

Jobs that don’t need permits

Adolescents (age 12, 13 or 14 years old) may only work in jobs that are approved by Employment Standards. For more information, see rules for Employees under 18.

No permits are needed for these approved jobs:

  • delivery person for newspapers, flyers and handbills
  • delivery person for small goods and merchandise for a retail store
  • clerk in a retail store
  • clerk or messenger in an office

Restaurant and food services jobs

Adolescents may work in these approved restaurant and food services jobs. While no permits are needed for these jobs, the employer must submit a Safety Checklist in advance of the employee’s proposed start date:

  • host/hostess
  • cashier
  • dish washing
  • bussing tables
  • server or waiter
  • providing customer service
  • assembling food orders
  • cleaning

Submit a Safety Checklist

Before an adolescent starts a restaurant and food services industry job, the employer must fill out and submit a Safety Checklist for Adolescent Employees in Restaurant and Food Services form (PDF, 1.5 MB).

Note: you don’t need to wait for a response from Employment Standards before the adolescent can start work, however, the completed safety checklist must be submitted to Employment Standards in advance of the adolescent’s start date.

Terms and conditions

Restaurant and food services jobs are subject to the following restrictions, as approved by the Director of Employment Standards:

  1. The employee will not be permitted to perform any duties that involve the use of deep fryers or grills, slicers or other potentially dangerous equipment, or work in areas where deep fryers or grills, slicers or other potentially dangerous equipment are in operation.
  2. The employee will not work in areas where smoking is permitted.
  3. The employer will ensure that the employment is not, or is not likely to be, injurious to the life, health, education or welfare of the employee.
  4. The employer will ensure that the adolescent employee is in the continuous presence of another employee at least 18 years old.
  5. The employer will ensure the health and safety of the employee as required under section 2 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act.
  6. The employer will ensure a Safety Checklist has been completed and will ensure compliance with it.
  7. The employer will complete a written hazard assessment, as required by Part 2 of the Occupational Health and Safety Code.
    1. The employer will control or eliminate all hazards.
    2. The employer will warn the adolescent employee about any hazards that may affect him or her.
  8. The employer will keep originals of the completed Safety Checklist and hazard assessment at the work place for each adolescent employee and will mail or fax a copy of the completed Safety Checklist to the Permit Administrator.
  9. The employee will not be employed:
    1. for longer than 2 hours on a day during which the adolescent is required to attend school,
    2. for longer than 8 hours on a day during which the adolescent is not required to attend school,
    3. between the hours of 9:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m.
  10. The employee will be paid at least minimum wage. All provisions of the Employment Standards Code and Regulation apply including vacation pay, general holiday pay and termination pay.
  11. The employer may not hire the adolescent without first obtaining the written consent of the adolescent’s parent or guardian.

Jobs that don’t qualify for permits

Permits won’t be issued for these non-approved jobs that could be harmful to adolescents, including but not limited to:

  • construction
  • jobs requiring heavy lifting (anything exceeding 10 lbs)
  • working with or near fuel or propane
  • working with or near moving vehicles and equipment
  • working with potentially hazardous equipment, such as:
    • powered equipment (power tools, lawnmowers, line trimmers, etc)
    • pneumatic drills
    • conveyors for bulk materials
    • pressure washers
    • hand grinders
    • welding equipment
    • hammers
    • blowtorches
    • deep fryers
    • grills
    • slicers
    • sharp knives

Jobs that need permits

An employer may apply for a permit from the Director if the proposed employment is not on the list of approved jobs.

The employer must apply for and receive an approved permit before the adolescent can begin working. This helps parents or guardians, employers, and Employment Standards to make sure the job isn’t likely to be harmful to the adolescent’s life, health, education or well-being.

How to apply

Step 1. Download application

If you’re the employer, download and open this fillable form:

Application for a Permit to Employ an Adolescent (PDF, 1.8 MB)

Step 2. Fill out application

Follow the instructions on the form. To fill it out, either:

  1. Fill out the form online, then save a copy to your computer. Print the completed form.


  1. Print form and fill out by hand.

Note: when filling out the form, choose only one correspondence preference: email, fax or mail.

Step 3. Sign application

After the application is filled out, the following individuals must review and sign it:

  • employer
  • parent or guardian
  • adolescent

Scan the signed application if submitting it by email.

Step 4. Submit application

The employer can send in the application to Employment Standards, by:

Fax: 780-422-8944
Permits Analyst
Employment Standards Program Delivery
Alberta Labour
6th floor, Labour Building
10808-99 Avenue
Edmonton AB T5K 0G5

Step 5. After you apply

  • after you apply for a permit for your potential employee, it may take approximately 5 to 10 business days from the date it’s received by Employment Standards before you’ll receive the Director’s response.  Please note processing times may be impacted and delays may occur if an application is incomplete or is missing crucial information
  • during the review period, Employment Standards may contact you if they need more information–your fast response will speed up the review process
  • if the permit is approved, Employment Standards will send it to you by mail, email or fax (as pre-selected on the application form)
  • Employment Standards will also forward a copy of the permit directly to the adolescent employee via letter mail
  • the employer must retain the permit on file
Modified: 2017-12-22
PID: 12192