Employment Certificate Application Instructions

Youth under the age of 16 who have obtained a job offer must apply for an employment certificate. Below is information on how to navigate this process:

Employment Certificate Application Instructions

Employment certificates are obtained through the Agency’s online system Virginia Electronic Employment Certificate System, (VAeECS).  The youth must have a job offer prior to applying for an employment certificate. The process requires online actions by the youth, employer, and parent, guardian, or custodian in that order.

The first step in the process is youth registration online.  Upon successful registration, the youth will be issued a unique identifier number.  This unique identifier number must be provided to the prospective employer to register to employ the youth, and to the parent, guardian, or custodian for consent to employment.  All parties should follow the screen prompts to properly register and complete required actions online.

Once an employment certificate has been issued the employer will receive the certificate electronically.   In accordance with §40.1-96 of the Code of Virginia, the employer must present the employment certificate to the youth for their signature.  The employer is required by §40.1-96 to retain either a paper or electronic copy of the employment certificate so long as the youth is employed or for a period of 36 months, whichever is longer.

Virginia Youth Electronic Employment Certificate Instructions Overview

Youth Employment Certificates are issued through Virginia’s New Employment Certificate application site.  Please read the notices below PRIOR to beginning the registration process.

  • Youth MUST BE age 14 or age 15 to apply for an employment certificate.
  • Youth DO NOT begin the registration process for an employment certificate until you have a firm offer of employment.
  • You WILL NOT be issued an employment certificate until you have an employer.
  • You MUST NOT begin to work until you have been issued an employment certificate by the Department of Labor and Industry.

Youth, Employer, and Parent, Guardian or Custodian, it is IMPORTANT to review the Child Labor Law FAQ on the Agency website PRIOR TO REGISTERING for important legal requirements concerning the employment of youth in the Commonwealth. Click on this link: https://www.doli.virginia.gov/labor-law/child-labor-law-faqs/

Click on this link to review the Virginia Electronic Employment Certificate System Fact Sheet: https://www.doli.virginia.gov/wp-content/uploads/2018/05/VAeECS-Handout.pdf

Click this link for instruction on how to apply manually: https://www.doli.virginia.gov/labor-law/employment-certificate-application-instructions/

Click here to begin the online registration process