As the summer holidays approach, your teenager might be thinking of doing his or her first job to gain experience and a bit of pocket money. How does it work for young people who want to take on a summer job in France?
Summer jobs are an important step for young people, making them feel grown-up for the first time. If you chose to raise your child in France, you should encourage him or her to carry out this first work experience there. There’s no better way to gain experience and confidence… and a bit of money, of course!
As the names implies, a summer job can only be carried out during a school or university vacation. Your child must be over 14 years old to do a summer job and it can only happen when they have at least 14 days of holiday. The job can’t legally exceed half of the holiday’s duration. For instance, if a student has 14 days of holiday, he or she can’t work for more than seven days. Furthermore, night shifts are forbidden for people younger than 16.
If the working teenager is a minor, the parents’ written agreement is required. Make sure that the work is adapted to your child’s age, as it is forbidden to give him or her dangerous duties or major responsibilities. The employer must receive written approval from the ‘Labour inspector’ to recruit a minor. This document outlines the contract’s length, working conditions, hours and salary.
Next, a working contract is established. This is an obligatory fixed-term contract (Contrat à durée déterminée in French). It contains the reason for the recruitment – for instance, to replace an absent employee – the contract length and the trial period, if there is one.
Regarding working conditions, your teenager has exactly the same rights and obligations as all the other employees. He or she must respect the office rules but has the right of access to a lunchroom or to have breaks. As he or she is considered as a temporary worker, the employee might also pay income tax, depending on his or her age and level of education.
By Nelly Lesage
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