Child labor laws are created to protect the children from abuse by their parents, relatives and opportunists. Exploitation of minor is prohibited by law. The law protects the child’s well being, emotional and physical growth, health and mental development.
Minors under 12 years old are barred by California law from working, or accompanying an employed parent (guardian) in an "agricultural danger zone". The prohibition also includes preventing the minor from being on or about moving equipment, or around unprotected chemicals or water hazards, and other hazards that constitute a zone of danger as may be determined in the future by California's Labor Commissioner. Aside from this, they are also prohibited from working or accompanying an employed parent in jobs declared by the U.S. Secretary of Labor as hazardous and prohibited to minors under 16.
On the other hand, minors ages 12 and 13 are prohibited by California law from being employed or permitted to work in occupations declared hazardous in federal regulation for minors under 16 in agriculture. Also, they are not allowed in any occupation determined by state law or regulation as hazardous.
Similarly, minors ages 14 and 15 are prohibited from being employed or permitted to work in agricultural occupations declared hazardous in federal regulations for minors under 16.
To every rule there are exceptions. With the California labor law, a child may be permitted to work in certain conditions. California law do prohibit or prevent employment of minors of any age by their parents, if the work -- in any task -- involves agricultural, horticultural, viticultural, or domestic labor. In case of minors who are enrolled in school, they are allowed to work so long as school is not in session or outside school hours. However, the exception applies only if the work is exclusively done "on or in connection with premises owned, operated, or controlled by the parent." Also, it must be noted that neither a "Permit to Work" or Permit to Employ" is needed for minors employed by parents in agricultural work on premises owned, operated, or controlled by the parent.