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What can I do at 16?

Aged 12 –


  • You can be held criminally responsible for a crime and in cases of serious offences such as murder, rape, manslaughter or aggravated sexual assault a young person of 10 or 11 can be charged.  
  • A young person can be issued with an ASBO (Anti-Social Behavioural Order) from the age of 12 which means that the Gardaí can take a number of actions to stop a person behaving in an anti-social way. 
  • Be in the Juvenile Justice system as the Children’s Court deals with children and young people under the age of 18.

  Aged 15 –

  • A young person of 15 can be employed in part-time work during the school term or school holidays for up to 8 hours per week.

  Aged 16 –

  • A young person of this age can choose their own GP
  • You can leave home at 16 with parental consent 
  • You can leave school at 16 or when you have completed 3 years of post-primary education 
  • At this age you can be employed in full-time work 
  • At 16 you can detained in a Children’s Detention Centre 
  • You can take part in an Apprenticeship or Traineeship course 
  • At this age you can obtain access to your medical records 
  • You can apply for a moped or tractor or work vehicle license and for a motorcycle up to 125cc

Based on information provided by Youthwork Ireland.