Many California employers may not be aware that the law regarding rest breaks for employees has changed. Employees are no longer required to remain on premises during rest breaks, the breaks cannot be interrupted, and employees can't be "on-call" during rest breaks.
Generally, employees working between 3.5 and 6 hours are entitled to one 10-minute rest break, with two 10-minute rest breaks for shifts of 6 - 8 hours. Employees working fewer than 3.5 hours are not entitled to a paid rest break. What's key is ensuring that employees are completely relieved of work during these rest breaks, and can choose to do whatever they like during the break. This includes leaving the workplace, as long as they return to their work station prior to the end of the rest break. Additionally, workers cannot be expected to be "on call" during a rest break or expected to answer their cell phone, as this means they are not fully relieved of their duties.
Laws pertaining to these issues can be complex and confusing. Contact Freeland Law APC for a free 30-minute consultation with Michael Freeland, experienced employment lawyer serving San Diego, California. Michael Freeland has been practicing law for more than 27 years and specializes in employment law matters.
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