Theatrical Employment

Can a minor work in a theatrical or modeling job in Washington State?

A young person may be employed as an actor, performer or model in film, video, audio, or theatrical productions in Washington State under certain conditions. These conditions apply if the minor is working in Washington — regardless of where they live.

What the employer needs to do

    1. Apply for, or amend a Business License to obtain a Minor Work Permit Endorsement for Washington State. (www.bls.dor.wa.gov). You may complete this application online through the Department of Revenue's Business Licensing Service. The cost is $15. (www.bls.dor.wa.gov)
    2. Complete a Parent/School Authorization form.
    3. Complete a Variance Application for Minors if any of the following apply:
      • The minor is under age 14.
      • The minor will be working during school hours; or,
      • The minor will be working additional hours beyond the allowable limits for those under age 18. See the chart for Hours of Work.
    4. When you submit the variance application form, include these items for each minor:

    General Information:

    Hours of Work - If you plan to schedule children beyond these limits, we recommend that you use the Screen Actors Guild (SAG) guidelines for child actors.

    Prohibited work activities - A variance is not permitted for a minor to perform any of the dangerous occupations or tasks listed on prohibited duties for teen workers web page.

    L&I can prepare the variance within 24 hours if necessary. You may mail your completed paperwork to the Department of Labor & Industries, P.O. Box 44510 Olympia, WA 98501-4510. Or fax it to 360-902-5300 or by emailing TeenSafety@Lni.wa.gov. For more questions call 1-866-219-7321.


    For more information, see the Revised Code of Washington:
    Actors or performers — Work permits and variances for minors (RCW 49.12.124).

    If you have any questions, please call 360-902-5316 or email teensafety@Lni.wa.gov.

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