Orange County Meal and Break Violations Lawyer
Is my employer supposed to give me rest and meal breaks while I’m at work? The answer depends on whether you’re classified as a nonexempt or exempt employee. Generally, if you’re paid hourly and have no managerial responsibilities, you’re classified as a nonexempt employee. What does this mean for you? It means you’re entitled to both rest and meal breaks during your shift!
If your employer denied you a meal or rest break, our Tustin employment law firm can help. Our attorneys know that employers in California often bypass the law in an effort to increase productivity and profits. We know how to hold them accountable. Let us fight for your rights and help you get the benefits and compensation you deserve.
Questions About Meal and Rest Break Violations
At MJB Law Group, we know you have questions. We also know that your employer probably isn’t being very transparent with you about your rights and their responsibilities.
That’s where we come in. Our attorneys can answer your questions and determine whether your employment rights were violated. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions we hear about meal and rest break violations in California.
When Do I Get Meal Breaks?
If you’re a nonexempt employee, you’re entitled to an unpaid off-duty meal break of at least 30 uninterrupted minutes if you work more than 5 hours in a day. You’re also entitled to a second meal break if you work more than 10 hours in a day.
When Am I Supposed To Get Rest Breaks?
As an employee, you’re entitled to a paid ten consecutive-minute rest break for every 4 hours worked. Ideally, your rest breaks should be in the middle of each 4-hour work period.
Can My Employer Ask Me to Skip Breaks?
Your employer can’t ask you to waive your right to take rest breaks. However, they may ask you to waive a meal break if you work less than 6 hours that day. They can also ask you to waive a second meal break if you work more than 10 hours but less than 12 hours and you didn’t waive the first meal break.
What Happens If I Can’t Take My Break?
If your employer fails to provide you with breaks or discourages you from taking them, they must pay you one additional hour at your regular rate for each day you didn’t get a meal or rest break.
What is a Valid Meal or Rest Break?
Sometimes, employers interrupt your lunch or rest break with tasks. This can invalidate your meal or rest break. Your employer must provide you with an uninterrupted break, and you must be relieved of all duties while on this break. You also have the right to leave the job site during these breaks without penalty.
Common Meal and Break Violations
Employers in California deny their employees meal and rest breaks daily. They may not have enough employees to cover a shift or provide breaks on time. This often occurs with night shift workers. Many times a business will only have one person working the night shift. This means that they must take all their “breaks” while on-call. This is against California employment laws.
Employers may also encourage their workers to stay on-call during their lunch breaks. They may send them important messages and reprimand them for not responding quickly during their breaks. This is also against the law because it invalidates their breaks by not providing an uninterrupted break time.
Yet, one of the most common ways employers violate meal and rest breaks is by failing to pay employees when they don’t get their break. Employers who make their employees stay on property or who interrupt their breaks often fail to see this as a violation of California labor laws and your employee rights. Therefore, they may not fail to pay them the additional hour of pay they’re required to pay by law.
These are just a few examples, and there may be other ways in which an employer could violate California labor laws related to meal and rest breaks.
Contact Our Tustin Meal & Break Violations Lawyers Today
If you believe your employer unfairly denied your meal or rest breaks, we can help. Our attorneys will investigate your case and gather strong evidence to support your claims. Together, we can hold negligent employers accountable and get you the compensation you’re owed.
Don’t wait! Contact us for a FREE case evaluation and consultation to discuss your legal options. Call us today at (949) 266-0880 or fill out our confidential contact form.