Labor & Employment Law

Youth Employment Certificate Application

Youth Employment Certificates are issued via the following options for employment in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Option 1 Electronic – The Virginia Electronic Employment Certificate System enables youth, employers and parents to electronically submit the application forms required for the issuance of an employment certificate. Upon completion of all 3 sections, generally the system will issue permits within 24 hours of your request. PLEASE BE ADVISED THAT ONLY THE EMPLOYER IS AUTHORIZED TO SUBMIT THE EMPLOYER PORTION OF THE APPLICATION AS THEY ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR ADHERING TO THE RECORD RETENTION REQUIREMENTS.

Youth Employment Certificates (Work Permits) 
Electronic Youth Employment Certificate now available online. Click here to begin.

Option 2 Manual – The paper application process for an employment certificate requires submission of two documents; a Permission for Employment form and an Employer Intent to Employ form to the Labor and Employment Law Division. Normal processing time is 7 to 10 business days.

The Permission for Employment form must be completed by the youth’s parent, guardian, or custodian and signed before a Notary Public.  A notary is required by law to affix a seal or stamp on every document he or she notarizes.  The stamp or seal is required to be sharp, legible, permanent, and photographically reproducible.  Many banks provide notary public services.  Only complete forms can be accepted for processing. 

The Intent to Employ form must be completed by the employer. The youth must furnish a copy of an acceptable evidence of age document.  The employer must retain and certify to the Labor and Employment Law Division the legal age for employment. The Code of Virginia §40.1-94 establishes the following as legal evidence of age documents:

  1. A birth certificate
  2. An attested transcript issued by a registrar of vital statistics or other officer charged with the duty of recording births
  3. A baptismal record or duly certified transcript thereof showing the date of birth and place of baptism of the child
  4. Other documentary proof of age specified by the Commissioner which includes any government issued identification card such as a passport, DMV identification card, or military identification card.

Only complete forms can be accepted for processing. Faxed or emailed documents cannot be accepted. Original forms must be submitted by U.S. mail.

After completion by the appropriate parties the forms should be mailed to:
Department of Labor & Industry
Child Labor Unit
1570 E. Parham Rd.
Richmond, VA 23228-2360

The youth may not begin employment until the employment certificate is issued.  Upon approval the employment certificate will be mailed directly to the employer.  Please allow seven to ten business days processing time.  Please be advised that incomplete forms will delay the issuance of an employment certificate.


Click here for the required forms.

Permission to Employ Form

Employer Intent to Employ Form

Paper applications may be requested by contacting us at (804)371-3104 ext. 242.