What Is the Legal Age to Babysit in California?

The state of California does not have a minimum age requirement for babysitting. For other types of work, age 12 is the youngest age at which a minor is able to obtain a work permit, as documented in California’s labor laws.

The labor laws of California state that babysitting is considered irregular work and is exempt from work permit requirements. Minors under age 12 are allowed to do irregular odd jobs in private households, including babysitting.

The American Red Cross, which provides babysitting training and certifications, recommends that children who babysit be at least 11 years of age. Experts also say that an 11-year-old trained in babysitting is often better prepared than an older child who is untrained; the maturity to perform babysitting duties is not always reflected in age.