If you are a California employee or employer, you should be aware of and understand all lunch and meal break laws. Lunch and meal break laws are established to best protect all workers. If your employer is denying you lunch or meal breaks, you may be entitled to receive compensation. An experienced employment lawyer can help you establish a case and give you the representation you deserve.
Unless you are an exempt worker, you are entitled to a rest break while working a shift. The specific requirements are as follows:
Every nonexempt employee who has worked over five hours in a day is obligated to receive a meal break. The criteria are as follows:
If your boss refuses to give you a rest or meal break, you have the right to file a claim. An experienced lawyer can help you evaluate your unique situation. They can work with you to compile a case against your workplace. This can get you compensation for the injustice done to you.
If your employer is proven to have violated the rest/meal break regulations, they will be required to pay you one hour of your regular pay for every day they neglected to give you a break.
A: Exempt employees are typically white-collar employees who earn at least twice the minimum wage salary for full-time employment. These workers must also work in a creative or managerial capacity and be responsible for making individual and discretionary decisions.
Exempt workers also include truck drivers and inside salespeople. However, despite not falling under the typical break requirements, these individuals are still entitled to breaks while working. To find out the specific requirements for you as an exempt worker, it is best to consult an experienced employment lawyer.
A: Rest and meal breaks should not be combined. If you have worked for 12 hours, your boss cannot simply give you a 1-hour meal break and say that it qualifies for your entire meal break. Instead, you should be given two separate meal breaks. Neither meal break should fall within the last hour of your shift.
There may be certain exceptions to the rule if you work in:
A: According to California law, employees who have worked at least 3.5 hours in one day are entitled to a rest period. These rest breaks must be at least 10 minutes of undisturbed, paid time. The employer cannot require the employee to stay within work premises, and they cannot make an employee work through this time. Rest breaks are laid out as follows:
A: You are allowed to work through or take your lunch break on duty if:
However, it should be known that your workplace has the right to deny your request to skip your lunch break and order you to take one against your wishes. Denying your lunch break does not protect you from being punished or fired from work.
We understand how hard it can be to suffer an injustice at work. You may often feel underappreciated or not seen by your employers, like your voice does not matter. It can make work an even more stressful, unpleasant place to be. At Clark Employment Law, APC, we work with you to ensure that you are being treated fairly in your workplace. Our team is here to listen and build a close relationship with you as our client. We work tirelessly to help you build a case for your unique situation that represents proof of workplace injustice and gets you the compensation you deserve. If you are an employee or an employer in Los Angeles who believes you have suffered an injustice at work, contact us today.