What’s a Child Performance Licence?

Category: Children

A child performance licence is required for all working children in the entertainment industry. The law applies to all children and young people from birth until the completion of compulsory school in which a child reaches the age of 16.

  • England – this is the last Friday in June of the school year when the child reaches the age of 16 and finishes Year 11 at school.
  • Scotland – if the child turns 16 between 1st March and 30th September they can leave school after 31st May of that year, and if they turn 16 between 1st October and the end of February they can leave at the start of the Christmas holidays in that school year.
  • Wales – they can leave school on the last Friday in June, as long as they’ll be 16 by the end of that school year’s summer holidays.
  • Northern Ireland – if you turn 16 during the school year (between 1 September and 1 July) you can leave school after 30 June.

If the job is overseas then an overseas licence is still required up to the age of 18.

The person in charge of the event (the ‘applicant’) applies to the child’s local council for the licence. So the Production Company hiring your child, or TV Twins will undertake the application procedure, not the parents!

The process can be time consuming and ideally should be applied for 21-days ahead of the event. However, since there’s often a very short turnaround period for shoots it might help if you knew where to download the relevant docs and what to prepare in advance!

Parents must supply the following for each licence application per child:

  1. Two recent passport-sized photographs of the child;
  2. Proof of the child’s date of birth (copy of birth certificate or back page of valid passport);
  3. Letter from the child’s headteacher agreeing to their absence from school and/or confirming that the proposed performances will not be detrimental to the child’s education;
  4. Health declaration form (if shooting abroad);
  5. Part 2 of the licence application form.

The Production Company (applicant) should supply:

  1. Confirmation email to include:
    1. fees
    2. what’s expected of child
    3. Itinerary: full location address(es) of shoot/rehearsals, with times and dates
  2. Part 1 of the licence application form;
  3. Safeguarding policy and risk assessment.

Find your local authority by entering your postcode at this link: Apply for a child performance licence

Use CamScanner to send us copies of birth certificate and passport photos. Upload files to our Dropbox, but ensure they’re named appropriately so we know who is who!!


Don’t forget that for twins you need 2 copies of everything; they cannot share a form 🙂

School permission letter (parents should ask Headteacher to sign) – PDF


Part 1 (agency/client to complete) – PDF

Child License – Part 1 (For agency or client) Download

Part 2 (parents to complete) – PDF

Child License – Part 2 (For parent) Download

Best to download Part 1 and 2 direct from your LA website as they like their own forms to be used! Or wait for us to send it to you.

Become a licensed chaperone for child performers

Tags: child, licence