California Entertainment Work Permit

A work permit it required by minors aged 15 days to 18 years of age to work on motion pictures of any type (film, videotape) in any format (theatrical, television, documentary) by any medium (theater, television, videocassette, DVD, as well as circuses, rodeos, musical performances and any other avenue in which minors perform for the entertainment of an audience.

The standard entertainment work permit can be obtained by filling out Form DLSE-277, which you can see a thumbnail on to the right. You can also download a copy by clicking here or by visiting the Downloads section of this web site. DLSE stand for the Division of Labor Standards Enforcement.

The top half of the form is the child’s personal information, including permanent address and vital statistics (height, weight, etc.) The bottom half of the form is divided into two separate sections: One for the school and then a physicians statement.

The school section must be filled out if the child is at a grade equivalency of first grade and has not yet graduated or received a GED from high school. If the child is not yet in first grade, then the parent must provide one of the following:

1. Certified copy of the child’s birth certificate
2. The child’s baptismal certificate
3. A letter on hospital letterhead attesting where and when the child was born
4. The child’s passport

Children who are schooled in a setting other than a traditional school environment (home schooling, tutor, etc.) must obtain written verification of their education level from the school district or the county office of education where the child lives.

If I child has been emancipated from their parents and have not yet reached their 18th birthday, a work permit is still required. Emancipated minors may sign for themselves in the Parent/Guardian box.

The completed application must be mailed in to the nearest DLSE office. Faxed applications are no longer accepted.


Work permits are only valid for six months at a time. They must be renewed.
There is no charge for applying for a work permit.
Any questions should be directed to your nearest DLSE office.
Out of state minors need their most recent report card or letter from school.

Click here for more information from the DLSE.

This article is meant as a guide, for the most current and up-to-date information regarding California Entertainment Work Permits, please contact your nearest DLSE office.

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