What Are the Meal and Rest Break Requirements for California Employees?

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California wage and hour laws regulate the standards for meal and rest break requirements for non-exempt employees. Below, we explain meal and rest break requirements for California employees. However, keep in mind that there are many nuances to California’s wage and hour laws. If you have specific questions about how California’s meal and rest break requirements may affect you as an employer or an employee, we recommend that you speak with one of our experienced Modesto employment attorneys. You can contact us online or call us at (209) 340-1110.

Meal Break Laws in California

If a non-exempt employee works more than five hours, then the employer must provide at least 30 minutes for a meal break. However, if the employee works no more than six hours, the employee and employer can mutually decide to waive the meal break.

Additionally, if the non-exempt employee works more than 10 hours, then the employer must provide a second meal break of at least 30 minutes. However, if the employee works no more than 12 hours, then the employee and employer can mutually decide to waive the meal break as long as the first meal break was not waived.

You can read more about California meal break laws on the California Department of Industrial Relations’s website.

Rest Break Laws in California

California employees are entitled to rest breaks during their work periods. The employer must provide a period of 10 minutes of rest for every four hours (or major fraction of four hours) worked. This means that if an employee works seven total hours, then the employee is entitled to two rest breaks of 10 minutes each. The employee would get one rest period for the first four hours of work and a second rest period for the last three hours of work. These rest periods are paid.

A non-exempt employee who works less than three-and-a-half hours is not required to have a rest break. You can read more about California’s rest period laws here.

Do You Have Questions About How California’s Meal and Rest Break Requirements Affect You? Contact Our Modesto Employment Lawyers.

If you have questions about how California’s meal and rest break laws may affect you as an employer or an employee, consider reaching out to our Modesto employment lawyers. Call us at (209) 340-1110 or contact us online, and someone from our firm will be in contact with you soon. We are happy to answer any questions you may have during a consultation.

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