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Youth-employment law change to take effect July 1

The countdown is on, and employers have less than a month left to prepare for a change in youth-employment law in Indiana.

In the 2020, legislative session, the General Assembly amended youth-employment law to eliminate work permits for minor employees effective July 1, 2021. But that change comes with a new responsibility for Hoosier employers, and one that bears a penalty of up to $400 per infraction if an employer is found to be out of compliance with the new law.

Starting July 1, employers who hire five or more minor employees (under age 18), per location, must register those employees in the new Youth Employment System, or YES for short. Schools will no longer be responsible for tracking and reporting minor employee data. That responsibility will rest with the employer.

This change will help take administrative burden off of the schools, simplify the process for both students and employers and enable employers to more quickly onboard minor employees. And with the summer getting into full swing, which is also the largest youth-employment season of the year, this change comes at a crucial time.

Schools will continue to have the opportunity to monitor which employers are hiring minor employees in their communities via YES and can request public information in the system specific to their students. This will enable schools to continue to collaborate with employers to balance a student’s employment and academic performance throughout the school year.

To help employers prepare for this change, the Bureau of Youth Employment, a division of the Indiana Dept. of Labor, launched YES on June 1, giving affected employers time to set up their accounts and test-drive the system before the new law goes into effect. Employers can get started by visiting www.dol.in.gov/youthemployment.htm and selecting the YES! button.

Employers and local business organizations can also request a digital communication kit to help inform their Indiana affiliates and local employers about this change in youth-employment law. To request a kit, organizations can email [email protected] and type YES KIT in the subject line.

We strongly encourage employers who are affected by this law to set up their YES accounts today and be compliant before July 1, 2021, when the law goes fully into effect.

For questions about YES or the change in youth-employment law, please visit www.dol.in.gov/youthemployment.htm.

Michael Myers, Director, Bureau of Youth Employment, Indiana Dept. of Labor

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