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Special regulations on young employees

You may enter into, terminate or withdraw from an employment contract if you are at least 15 years old and have completed compulsory education. If you are under 15 years old, then you may make an employment contract with the permission of a parent or guardian, or your parent or guardian may make the contract on your behalf.

Your parent or guardian may revoke your employment contract if you are aged between 15 and 18 years and the contract harms your education, development or health.

The Regional State Administrative Agency may issue a dispensation on special grounds permitting a minor to work as a performer or assistant in artistic and cultural presentations and corresponding events. Such work may not jeopardise the safety or harm the development and school attendance of the child.

Some other restrictions concerning young employees:

  • the daily working hours of a minor of school age may be no more than two hours on school days and no more than seven hours at other times.
  • an employee aged at least 15 years may engage in two-shift work until no later than midnight.
  • an employee aged at least 14 years may perform light work that is not injurious to health and does not disrupt school attendance.
  • the working time of a 14 year-old employee during school vacations may not exceed seven hours a day and 35 hours a week.
  • night work by employees under 15 years of age is prohibited.

The employer must give a young employee a written account of the terms and conditions of employment when so requested by the employee concerned or by the employee’s parent or guardian. This account must be provided before making the employment contract unless the contract is made in writing or concerns one day of housework in the employer’s home.


Text edited by: Central Organisation of Finnish Trade Unions – SAK, Confederation of Finnish Industries – EK, Confederation of Unions for Professional and Managerial Staff in Finland – Akava, Finnish Confederation of Salaried Employees – STTK, KT Local Government Employers, Labour Market Organisation of the Church – KiT, Office for the Government as Employer – VTML
Updated: 12/11/2018