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Special Protection for Child Performers

Ontario's Protecting Child Performers Act, 2015, S.O. 2015, C.2 received royal assent on May 5, 2015. It will come into force in February 2016. In sum, this legislation sets minimum standards for all persons under the age of 18 years who receive monetary compensation for their performances. It will apply to work performed in both live and studio settings. You can review the new legislation here.

Among other items, the legislation will require pre-contractual and ongoing disclosure obligations respecting the nature of the work to be performed and a written contract. Depending on certain factors, it may also require payment of a percentage of the earnings to a trust account, require that tutoring services be provided, limit the number of hours worked in a day and require a parent, guardian or chaperone accompany the child in the workplace.

While some of the new requirements will overlap with those set out for child performers in existing union and guild agreements, there are points of difference which may require changes to current practice.

It should also be noted that BC has similar regulations under its employment standards legislation that should also be consulted if working in that province. You can review the BC legislation here.