Enforcement and Fines – FLSA Child Labor Laws


Individuals who are found to have willfully violated the child labor restriction of the Fair Labor Standards Act may be subject to both criminal and civil penalties, as discussed below.

Convictions, Fines, and Imprisonment

Individuals who are found to have willfully violated the child labor restriction of the Fair Labor Standards Act may be subject to fines not to exceed $10,000 or imprisonment for not more than 6 months, or both. An individual may only be imprisoned for willfully violating child labor laws if they have previously been convicted of violating the Fair Labor Standards Act. 29 US Code 216(a); 29 CFR 570.140(a)



Civil Penalties

Entities that are found to have violated the Fair Labor Standard Act’s child labor laws will be subject to the following civil penalties:

  • no more than $11,000 for each youth who is employed in violation of the child labor restrictions, or
  • no more than $50,000 if a youth is employed in violation of the child labor restrictions and suffers death or serious injury (the penalty may be doubled if the violation is a repeat violation or if it is willful)

29 US Code 216(e)(1); 29 CFR 570.140(b)

For purposes of civil penalties, the term serious injury means:

  • the permanent loss or substantial impairment of one of the senses (sight, hearing, taste, smell, tactile sensation);
  • the permanent loss or substantial impairment of the function of a bodily member, organ, or mental faculty, including the loss of all or part of an arm, leg, foot, hand, or other body part; or
  • permanent paralysis or substantial impairment that causes loss of movement or mobility of an arm, leg, foot, hand, or other body part.

29 US Code 216(e)(1)