July 22, If employees work more than 6 hours, however, they cannot waive their meal period. Indeed, the obligation to ensure employees do no work may in some instances be inconsistent with the fundamental employer obligations associated with a meal break: to relieve the employee of all duty and relinquish any employer control over the employee and how he or she spends the time. The potential consequences to the employer if an employee is relieved of all duty. The court stated:. Like meal periods, the court in Brinker required employers only to provide the required rest periods, but employers are not required to force employees to take them. The most notable aspect of the Brinker decision is that the requirement to "provide" meal breaks now definitively means to allow and permit them, and to structure schedules and shifts in such a way that uninterrupted breaks are available after five hours of work. The key obligation for employers is to provide the above-described meal breaks.
The primary holding of the case is that employers do not need to ensure that The Court also clarified when meal periods must be provided.
Brinker Court Clarifies Meal and Rest Period Obligations
The long awaited decision by the California Supreme Court in the Brinker Additionally, the Court clarified when and how often rest periods must be taken. Yet, the primary issue remains the same: do common or individual.
Thus, the primary issue in Brinker was determining whether employers must simply Rather, the Brinker decision suggests that early meal breaks are meal breaks, employees are entitled under California law to receive two.
Math is the hidden secret to understanding the world Roger Antonsen - Duration: Meal Period Timing In Brinkeremployees were required to begin their meal period within the first hour of work in large part because of the demands of the restaurant business.
Provide copies of the meal and rest break policies to employees, and require written or electronic acknowledgment of receipt. And employers who already have written policies need to review them.
Brinker decision clarifies California law on meal and rest breaks
As Brinker points out, an employee who takes a meal period one hour into an eight-hour shift could still take a post-meal period rest break "in the middle" of the first four-hour work period, in full compliance with the applicable provisions of IWC Wage Order No.
If they were unable to do so, employers would have to pay an extra hour of pay any time an employee voluntarily chose not to take a meal period, or to take a shortened one.
Today the California Supreme Court issued its long-awaited decision in Brinker v. Superior Court, laying to rest some greatly litigated issues. In the petition, Brinker challenged the court's July meal period order. 5 also "does not dictate the anomalous result that meal periods must be provided meal and rest breaks in accordance with California law and who have not been .
Employee meal period breaks – employer responsibilities Lexology
In the primary holding of the case, the appellate court stated.
The court stated:. The employee and employer have a signed agreement authorizing an on-duty meal period; and.
The Court stated: "An employer is not obligated to police meal breaks and ensure no work thereafter is performed. This case will no doubt change many wage and hour litigator's case strategies, unless the California Supreme Court grants review of the decision.
If this were the case, employers would be forced to police their employees and force them to take meal breaks.
Video: California meal break law brinker elementary Meal and Rest Break Law in California: Explained
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|Employers should train supervisors and managers on the above legal requirements.
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This can be done in staff meetings, via monthly email announcements, or in any other mode of communication that is documented. Employers need not police employees and force them to take their meal breaks at the designated times, or to prohibit them from engaging in work duties during their meal breaks.
Make sure that your business has posted the Wage Order in a prominent location on the premises and is following all of the requirements of the Wage Order. Is that really what the law requires?