Meal and Rest Breaks

Although it’s common practice for employers to give employees breaks during the work day, it isn’t necessarily legally required. Although employers have to pay employees who have to work through lunch or other time the employer calls a “break,” the federal law that governs wages and hours — the Fair Labor Standards Act, or FLSA — doesn’t require employers to give any breaks at all.

However, some states do require employers to give meal breaks, rest breaks, or both. The articles in this section explain the rules.

Questions & Answers

Resources on Meal and Rest Breaks

Your Rights in the Workplace
Nolo’s essential guide to employee rights, including wage and hour laws that protect workers.

The Department of Labor, Wage and Hour Division
This federal agency enforces the laws on minimum wage, overtime, child labor, and more.

Find an Employment Lawyer In Your Area
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