Can an employer hire someone under the age of 18? If you do not want to violate the Employment Ordinance, Chapter 57 of the Laws of Hong Kong and suffer corresponding penalties, how should you arrange the working hours, rest days, etc. of “young” employees? This article summarizes the main points of the Employment of Young Persons (Industry) Regulations. Based on the original text of the Regulations, it introduces the rights and interests of young workers.
Employ persons under the age of 18
According to the Employment Ordinance of the Labour Department, some “young” or “child” employees are protected by law and enjoy established employment rights, and their employers are also obliged to comply with the relevant regulations.
Employment of Young Persons (Industry) Regulations: Definition of Young Persons
According to the Employment of Young Persons (Industry) Regulations under the Employment Ordinance, all persons aged 15-18 are “young people”. The regulations apply to all young persons employed in industrial undertakings, excluding:
• perform clerical or managerial work in an industrial undertaking, or perform health or welfare services in connection with that industrial undertaking;
• Cleaning of buildings solely for the purpose of industrial operations, but not including the cleaning of machinery or production equipment;
• acting purely as a manager of an industrial undertaking;
• Engage in the preparation of food for consumption and sale on premises where the food is prepared.
Employment period and working hours for young employees
The employment period of young employees (referring to the period during which the employee is employed on any day, including meal and rest periods) and working hours are as follows:
• Employment period – up to 10 hours (must be between 7am and 7pm unless special permission is obtained from the Labour Department);
• Hours of work – up to 8 hours;
• Maximum working hours per week – 48 hours;
• Maximum number of working days per week – 6 days;
• Maximum continuous working hours – 5 hours followed by a meal or rest period of not less than half an hour.
Rest days, meals and rest time arrangements
Regarding rest day arrangements, young people employed in industrial undertakings shall be entitled to one rest day per week. If they have individual rest days, they should be listed in the “Young Worker Registration Form” (to be handed over when required by labour inspectors). check). If the employer wants to change the rest day arrangement, he should complete the relevant form 48 hours before the rest day and submit it to the Commissioner for Labour. Changes can only be made once a month.
As for meal and rest time arrangements, employers are required to issue designated circulars setting out the working hours, meal or rest time, and rest day arrangements. Changes may not be made unless the Labour Department is notified in advance and a new circular is filled out.
Employers who employ “young” employees shall not require them to perform the following work, and shall provide appropriate cooperation and support to the work:
• Do not employ young people to work underground (mines, quarries, tunneling, etc.);
• Do not employ youth in hazardous industries (including shovelling boilers, making glass, making cinnabar, chrome-plating, nitric or sulphuric, etc.);
• Do not employ young people to move heavy objects (whether it is too heavy or not depends on their age and physique, generally under the age of 16 cannot move objects over 18 kg);
• If the job requires standing, the employer must provide appropriate seating facilities.
The above information is for reference only. If you have any questions about tax declaration and accounting, we welcome your inquiries.