Your employee rights

All workers have certain rights in law and there are special laws to protect the employment rights of young workers.

Further information

Young workers

Young people over school leaving age and under 18 are known as young workers. Young people can leave school on the last Friday of June of the school year in which they are 16. Find out more about the rights of young workers on their website.

Bullying and discrimination at work

Unfortunately there are sometimes bullies at work. You have a right to fair treatment by your work mates and your boss. See the GOV.UK website for advice and information.

Health at work

Your workplace probably looks harmless – it isn’t. Lots of people have accidents at work and sometimes people are permanently disabled or even killed. Make sure this doesn't happen to you. Visit the Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) website to find out about the common causes of accidents and how you can try to avoid them.

Working under 16

If you are under school leaving age you may be able to work part-time. There are laws about how old you need to be, when you can work and what kind of work you can do. These laws are to ensure that your education does not suffer and that you are safe.

If you get a part-time job your employer needs to apply for an employment licence for you.

Workers under 16:

  • Don’t have to pay national insurance contributions and don't have to pay tax unless you earn over a certain amount known as the personal allowance. See the HMRC website for more information on the personal allowance
  • Aren't entitled to the National Minimum Wage. You may get a low rate of pay - check with your employer before you start.
  • Don’t get Statutory Sick Pay. You may not get paid if you are ill. 
  • Do have the right to paid holiday in the same way as other workers.