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Legal requirements for 17 yr old starting work with accomodation provided.

(7 Posts)
Yellowhorse Sat 06-Apr-13 23:16:14

Does anyone have any idea of the legal side of a 17 year old starting employment at a job,where both accomodation and food are provided?
I can find nothing covering this topic,and I am concerned said teen is being taken advantage of because they love the job.
Hours are 9-6 six days a week,and often longer. Pay is £90 weekly.
While I appreciate that money's not everything,I am concerned about the legal working week,plus the actual pay.
I can't find any information about legal minimum wages where both food and accomodation is provided. The industry is not agriculture either,which exempts young people from working limits. Nor,about working hours where accommodation and food are provided.
Some training is provided but not as an apprentice.
Any help appreciated,thanks

specialsubject Sun 07-Apr-13 10:39:30

is this by any chance a seasonal outdoors/watersports job? PGL? Mark Warner? (guessing not abroad as he isn't 18)

if it is seasonal, the working time directive still, er, works because the hours are averaged over a long period. If not, the contract says that you opt out of the WTD.

these jobs are a lot of fun but also very hard work. Not having to pay rent, council tax, fuel, water, repairs, food, travel means that the £90 covers food and toothpaste. (and often a large amount of alcohol)

if he is prepared to work hard and learn, he should get a lot of out of it.

if it is a proper company, with a contracy and insurance, land your helicopter. :-)

flow4 Sun 07-Apr-13 10:39:49

The Working Time Directive and minimum wage legislation might offer him some protection.

WTD says that 17 yo's can't normally be made to work over 40 hrs per week. Details here . Some jobs are exempt (e.g. armed forces, domestic service) but I think the exemptions only apply to over 18s.

The minimum wage for under 18s is £3.68/hr. I think the only exception to this is if the job is an apprenticeship or other training prog leading to a recognised qualification. £90/wk is a pretty standard amount for apprenticeships in low-paid industries sad But then, working hours should be (strictly speaking) limited to 25/wk to allow for training time.

Your local Connexions service should be able to confirm facts and give you some advice.

flow4 Sun 07-Apr-13 10:53:13

Oh, a bit more digging shows that...

- The NMW for apprentices is £2.65/hr.
- There is something called an 'accommodation off-set', which means employers still have to pay NMW, but can deduct certain amounts for accommodation - up to about £33/wk. Details here. There's also a nanny example here with more info.

specialsubject Sun 07-Apr-13 15:26:52

hold on. If it is a 'fun' job teaching his hobby, they all pay like this. It's not a career path (despite what the companies tell you), but it is a useful job and will teach useful life skills.

if said teen wants to do it for a while, why not? Plenty of time to be locked indoors doing a 'real job' later.

travel and holiday companies don't actually make much profit, and only function because of an endless supply of those who want to do this kind of job.

flow4 Sun 07-Apr-13 16:32:55

I wouldn't worry much about the money, personally, but I would worry about my teen doing a 52+ hour week - more than most adults are legally allowed to do. Teens need their sleep, and every working person deserves some relaxation! I'd also worry about the people at the receiving end of said teen's services, especially towards the end of those 52+ hours. If this is an activity holiday type job, I wouldn't want my child to be taught kayaking or supervised on a zip wire by an exhausted teen, for instance... Or if this is an au pair job, I wouldn't want to leave my toddler with a teen who hasn't had enough sleep themselves...

specialsubject Sun 07-Apr-13 19:48:40

having done it when older than 17 - all activity companies expect staff to work 6 days a week, those hours. You do get tired towards the end of the season but it is perfectly possible. It's not activity all the time, there is usually a reasonable lunch break and the jobs get switched around.

to use your kayaking example, someone who kayaks as a hobby will be getting paid to do it while teaching so it doesn't feel like work!

most of the young staff do it, get drunk quite often and still do the job well.

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