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| 1 minute read

New Illinois Law Mandates Influencers to Compensate Child Participants

A new Illinois law that took effect on July 1 mandates that parent influencers compensate their children for appearing in content. This legislation, which became part of the state's Child Labor Laws last year, requires minors aged 16 and under to be paid if they appear in 30% or more of the paid content their parents create and share on social media.

Under the law, if a child appears in at least 30% of a parent or caregiver's social media content over a 30-day period and the number of views received per video met the online platform's threshold for compensation, the minor must receive monetary compensation. Parents are required to set aside these funds in a trust in the minor's name, accessible when the minor turns 18. In addition, parents must maintain records of all content created, compensation received and funds deposited into the trust account, providing these records to the minor regularly. If a parent fails to compensate the minor appropriately, the minor can seek legal recourse.

This law is groundbreaking in the influencer space, but it is not the first to protect child earners from financial exploitation by their parents or caregivers. Existing laws, such as the Coogan Law (California Child Actor's Bill), require parents of minor performers to place a portion of their earnings into a trust to prevent misuse or squandering. However, these laws have not kept pace with technological advances and the rise of the child influencer industry.

While Illinois is the first state to enact this kind of law, other states are considering similar legislation. Maryland, for example, introduced a "right to be forgotten" bill for minors wishing to remove their content from the internet, which was referred to a committee earlier this year. The Illinois law does not include such a provision.

As more states consider similar measures, the landscape of legal protections for child influencers is likely to evolve, reflecting the evolving dynamics of the influencer industry.


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