The Law Office of Michelle Cohen Levy, P.A.
Free Phone Consultations
954-687-9782

Can I refuse to take lunch breaks?

Rules about lunch and meal breaks vary from workplace to workplace, or even from state to state. As a result, it can be complicated for workers to navigate the specific rules at their given place of employment. One common question concerns whether it's permissible for a worker to refuse a lunch break. The Balance aims to answer this and other questions regarding the legality of lunch and meal breaks for workers. 

Working through a lunch break is a sticking point for many employers. While lunch breaks can be unpaid, employees working through lunch must be paid for the time they put in. This is true even if the worker was told that he or she must take a lunch break. Ultimately, it's up to the employer to enforce the laws regarding breaks, and if they're unable to do so, no matter the reason, they are still responsible for remitting payment.

However, that doesn't mean that an employer can't somehow punish the worker for the indiscretion. It's fully within the employer's rights to discipline the worker who commonly flouts rules regarding lunch breaks. An employer may even be able to fire the worker for repeated issues, provided they've taken the proper steps to document the termination and counsel the worker. 

Employers can also dictate when workers take their breaks. This is often necessary for managerial staff, as you want to rest assured that someone with authority is available at all times to answer questions and deal with issues. Exempt workers, or those that are not beholden to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) rules regarding overtime laws, are generally allowed to take breaks as they see fit, while non-exempt workers usually have scheduled breaks. 

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Do You Have A Legal Concern?

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Email Us For A Response

Contact

Fort Lauderdale Office
633 SE 3rd Avenue
Suite 4F
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33301

Phone: 954-687-9782
Phone: 954-651-9196
Fax: 954-463-1245
Map & Directions

Lighthouse Point Office
4400 N. Federal Hwy
Lighthouse Point, Florida 33064

Phone: 954-651-9196
Map & Directions