top down Icon

Keeping Up with Employee Break Laws


Posted on Tuesday, March 13, 2018


Time & Attendance Software for Break Law Compliance | Time Rack

Skimp on employee lunch breaks and you can end up holding the bag, with a growing number of states adding mandatory break laws that carry potential fines and penalties, not to mention the threat of litigation.

It's no longer just good business to keep track of employee lunch breaks, sick time, paid time off and family leave – it is a compliance issue in many cases.

The best practice is to keep up with these changing regulations, and Time Rack's time and attendance solutions can help.

States that Require Time Off for Breaks

While the federal Fair Labor Standards Act does not require an employer to provide a meal period, at least 24 states, including California, Colorado, Illinois, Massachusetts and New York, require time off for lunch, according to the U.S. Department of Labor's Wage and Hour division.

Most required breaks are a half an hour but requirements vary from state to state. The employees who are exempt from the regulations also vary from state to state. In California, the motion picture and broadcasting industries are exempt.

Some states, including Florida, Hawaii, North Carolina, Utah, California and Illinois have specific break time provisions for minors.

In Delaware, employers are required to offer a half hour break after the first two hours of work and before the last two hours of the day for employees who work 7 ½ consecutive hours. Exempt employees include teachers and those covered by a collective bargaining agreement, but for those who are subject to them them, failing to comply with break regulations can bring hefty fines including up to $1,000 per violation for discriminating against or firing employees  for complaining that they did not get a break, the U.S. Department of Labor reports.

States Take on Sick Leave Policy

Another time policy with growing regulation from states is paid sick leave. Connecticut, California, Massachusetts, Oregon, Arizona, Washington, Rhode Island, Maryland, Vermont and Washington, D.C, require paid sick leave, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Compliance with break and leave policies, including sick time and family leave, requires accurate time and attendance tracking of all employees, including salaried workers.

Time Rack Makes Compliance Easy

Time Rack time and attendance software can make it easy with customizable features that provide built-in compliance safeguards no matter what your state requires.

Time Rack software tracks time in and out and can set periods of time (such as mandatory lunch breaks) that lock an employee out from punching back in before the lunch break is over in order to avoid both overtime and lunch-break compliance issues.

Give yourself a break and find out how Time Rack can make all of your compliance worries go away.

Contact us to learn more about time and attendance solutions