Illinois doesn't have any restrictions for 17-year-old workers and thus follows the United States Department of Labor rules for workers that age. People in this age group can work in more positions and for longer hours compared with other teen workers but still face restrictions.
In Illinois, at 17 years old, you may legally work in any occupation not declared hazardous by the United States secretary of labor. Some of the positions that are considered hazardous include making explosives, roofing, mining, operating bakery machines, working as an outside helper on a motor vehicle, fighting forest fires, any work with exposure to radioactive materials, logging and meat packaging,
Seventeen-year-old workers may work at a family farm for their parents. Illinois is a state with a agricultural industry, so it's important to know this exception to the hazardous occupation list. At 17, a worker in Illinois can drive as part of her position, but only under the following conditions: the driving takes place only during daytime hours, the driver is licensed and the driving is only occasional. The teen can drive for only one-third of one day, or 20 percent of the workweek. Some of the hazardous positions allow exemptions for teen workers as student learners or apprentices.
Any employee under 20 can be paid at minimum $4.20 for the first 90 days of employment. After 90 days, the teen must be paid the regular federal minimum wage, which as of 2011 was $7.25. Some categories of employees can be paid less, including tipped employees that work primarily for tips, apprentices and some student workers.
While some states require 17-year-old workers to obtain a work permit from their school district, Illinois does not require the documentation.