Am I Entitled To Meal And Rest Brakes?

All employees must receive a meal break of at least 30 consecutive minutes if the employee is scheduled to work 7.5 or more hours per day. Meal breaks must be given sometime after the first two hours of work and before the last two hours of work. This rule does not apply when the employee is a professional employee certified by the State Board of Education and employed by a local school board to work directly with children or when there is a collective bargaining agreement or other employer­employee written agreement, which provides otherwise.

Exemptions can be granted when compliance would adversely affect public safety; only one employee may perform the duties of a position; an employer has fewer than five employees on a shift at one location (the exception would only apply to that shift); continuous nature of an employer's operations such as chemical production or research experiments, requires employees to respond to urgent or unusual conditions at all times and the employees are compensated for their meal breaks.

Minors must be given at least a thirty­minute break after working more than five consecutive hours.

Where exemptions are allowed, employees must be allowed to eat meals at their workstations or other authorized locations and use rest room facilities as reasonably necessary.

The information on this page is meant to provide a general overview of the law. The laws in your state and/or city may deviate significantly from those described here. If you have specific questions related to your situation you should speak with a local attorney.

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