Employment Lawyers Can Answer Your Employment Law Questions
Hello, my name is***** am a qualified lawyer and I will be assisting you with your question today.
Is there a reason breaks are not allowed?
Hi there, sorry I was offline by the time you had replied. The laws on rest periods in the workplace are governed by the Working Time Regulations. They state that a worker who works for at least 6 hours a day is entitled to a rest break of 20 minutes. So even if they work for more than 6 hours the requirement is still for a 20 minute break. This must be uninterrupted and not taken at the start or end of the shift. It must also be taken away from their workstation, so whilst they do not have to be allowed to go outside or be provided with a rest area, they should be allowed to leave the desk for that period.
So if you can you should try and get someone to cover a 20 minute break at some point during the day. It does not have to be at lunchtime and could be at say 10:00 or 13:30 – not quite at lunchtime but also not right at the beginning or end of their day.
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these breaks are at the employer's discretion. many employers give an hour's lunch for example but this is not required by law - the only requirement is to do with rest breaks which are 20 minutes for at least 6 hours work. In fact as the law stands someone could work for 10 hours and still only get 20 minutes by law - anything on top of that is at the employer's discretion.
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