Children and the Law
California
Childcare and Babysitting

How old do you have to be to watch a child in Pennsylvania?

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2005-11-28 16:40:37
2005-11-28 16:40:37

This issue is a "judgment call" rather than a legal one. If it is a matter of a pre-teen or teenager caring for a child for a few hours, both sets of parents should use their own judgment as to the capability of the minor to handle various situations, such as an injury or illness or any emergency. Very few states have laws citing specific ages pertaining to child care or "latchkey" children and problems arise only when some unfortunate incident has occurred such as the child/children being cared for are injured or in some way neglected. In most legal arenas it is presumed a minor who is at least 14-years-old is capable of demonstrating reasonable care when it pertains to younger children.

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