View Full Version : lunch breaks

10-21-2005, 06:07 PM
I work part time and for several years I worked 4-6 hours per day without taking a lunch. My employer started about 6 months ago taking 30 minutes out of our paycheck per day for any hours worked over 4 hours a day. My employer states that this is south carolina law, is this true?

10-22-2005, 07:03 AM
No, there is no such law in SC. See here: http://www.llr.state.sc.us/Labor/index.asp?file=faq.htm

However, if the employer wants you to take a meal break, regardless of whether the law requires it or not, you take a meal break.

07-07-2006, 09:00 AM
Just q quick question to this answer. If the employer did not advise the employee that they must take a lunch break through either the employee handbook or other means what action can they take. What if the employer did not advise the employee and at the end of the week took hours off the time card. Is this a legal course of action for the employer or should I do more research with my HR department?

07-07-2006, 09:14 AM
Under Federal law, the employee must be paid for all the time worked. This includes if the employee works through a lunch break. So no, it is not legal for the employer to refuse to pay him, and the employee can file a claim for unpaid wages with the DOL if he is not paid appropriately.

However, it is the opt of the employer, not the employee, whether or not lunch breaks are to be taken. For some reason, a lot of people think that if there is no law mandating a lunch break, the employer cannot require one either. That is not the case. Since the employee is NOW aware that the employer wants him to take a lunch break, he can be disciplined up to and including termination if he refuses.

07-14-2006, 03:03 PM
I work in a big government owned hospital in nutritional services and I wanted to know if you work a 8 hour shift.How long do you have to work to get a lunchbreak?Some people will com in at 6:00am in the morning and don't get a break for 7 hours.By time they get there break it be about time for them to go home.

07-14-2006, 03:07 PM
South Carolina law doesn't require rest breaks or meal periods at all. See page 2 here:

07-22-2006, 05:55 PM
I have the same concern as the other posters about lunch breaks in South Carolina. I'm stunned to see the reply that SC Law does not require an employer to provide employees with breaks or a lunch period. This has never been my understanding. There are old "blue" laws on the books which, for instance, state that a female must have two fifteen minute breaks a day. As far as I am aware, this has not been amended.

Most importantly, do I understand this correctly that if a person is required to work a 10 hour day, the employer can tell them that they cannot take a lunch break or eat at all? Or are you saying that the employer is just not required to PAY the employee for this time. This sounds a little like a violation of civil rights if an employee is not allowed time to stop and rest during a 10 hour shift. Please confirm. Thanks.

07-22-2006, 06:11 PM
No, we're saying exactly what the law says, or in this case, doesn't say. Your understanding is incorrect. Unless there is a law requiring meal periods, the employer does not have to give you one. And if they do give you a meal period of at least 20 minutes, and you are relieved of duty for that time, it need not be paid.

07-22-2006, 06:25 PM
So SC law does not protect employees by requiring an employer to allow employees time to eat (whether paid or unpaid) if they work an 8 hour shift. How many other states have such antiquated labor laws?

07-23-2006, 02:53 AM
No, they don't. I'm not saying I agree. I believe all states should have laws requiring rest breaks and meals periods. But they don't.

07-24-2006, 07:04 AM
Quite a few states do not have any laws requiring rest or meal breaks, and Federal law does not require them either. Like Patty, I don't necessarily agree with such a policy, but in the absence of a law specifically requiring breaks, such breaks are up to the employer.

04-28-2008, 06:37 AM
Where I work we have a lot of employees that think they are entitled to a 15 minute break for every XX amount of hours worked... This is NOT THE CASE.

In SC you are NOT entitled to ANY break unless the employer tells the employee they are to take a break. This INCLUDES a Lunch Break.

So if you work in SC you could be required to work a 10+ hour shift WITHOUT A BREAK OF ANY KIND and if you don't like it then your only recourse is to QUIT THE JOB.

Remember, No one is MAKING you work. It's a free country. But if you CHOOSE to work for a company in SC then you are NOT entitled to any break.

There is NO FEDERAL LAW of any kind that says employees are entitled to any type of break while working.

04-28-2008, 08:34 AM
th777, why are you responding to a 3-year post? I doubt very seriously the OP has been checking for three years to see something that we told them 3 years ago.

04-28-2008, 11:44 AM
Where I work we have a lot of employees that think they are entitled to a 15 minute break for every XX amount of hours worked... This is NOT THE CASE.

As Patty has pointed out, responding to a post that is a couple of years old will not help the orginal poster.

But, since you brought it up, I cannot imagine having employees work eight, ten, twelve, sixteen hours without a break. Employers are not legally required to provide breaks in most states, but they are asking for turnover by not doing so.

04-28-2008, 05:46 PM
Why Respond to a 3 year old post?? Because where I work this issue has been addressed on a daily basis and a lot of false info is out there.

Many employees are under the impression that a Federal Law exist that says "anyone who works XX amount of hours is entitled to a 15 minute paid break." this is FALSE INFO.

There is no such Federal Law.

I was researching SC Labor Laws and came across this post. I had no idea it was 3 years old and still floating around in Cyber Space... But, if anyone finds this, please know that as of 2008 there is STILL NO Federal Law giving anyone a paid 15 minute break anywhere in the USA regardless of hours worked.

Peace, Love, and Prosperity... TH777

04-28-2008, 05:52 PM
Yes, we have stated that on many occasions. You're not the only one who is aware of that. If you do a search you will find many, much newer posts disclaiming the 15 minute break so many believe in. I've personally posted it I don't know how many times.

Please check the dates before you post and do not answer old posts. Thank you.

04-29-2008, 09:23 AM
Humm excuse me but is this not a public posting forum??

I was not aware that I had to ask for your permission to post in this public forum.

Please dont TELL ME where or how to post my thoughts.

04-29-2008, 09:57 AM
So, you don't have to follow the rules of the forum, huh?

We have reasons for requesting people to refrain from posting in old threads. You are not exempt.

If you want to take this further, feel free to PM me. We will not do this in public.

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