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7th Day Rule Massachusetts

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  • 7th Day Rule Massachusetts

    I am asking this question for my brother. I know I have seen a post on this site before that mentioned something called the seventh day rule (probably not the technical name). Unfortunately I didn't read that post and now I am having trouble finding it.

    My brother has been scheduled to work 14+ days in a row without a day off. Now I know I have seen members of this board tell other members that a company can ask you to work 24/7/365 if they wanted to (although not wise). So, if there is something known as a seventh day rule what does it mean?


    Thanks in advance

  • #2
    Some, but not all, states, have a law that requires an employee to be given out day out of every seven off. Such laws are colloquially called a one-day-in-seven rule, or a seven-day rule.

    In states that do not have a seven-day rule, or another law that limits the number of hours that an employee can be required to work, an employee can legally be required to work 24/7/365. Note that some jobs/industries have their own limitations, usually if not always when there is a public safety factor. Examples of such jobs are airline pilots and interstate truck drivers.

    MA has a limited seven-day rule. To know if it applies to your brother, you will have to tell us what he does, and whether or not he is exempt or non-exempt.
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

    Comment


    • #3
      My brother works in a retail store for a large retail chain. He is an hourly, non-exempt employee. (I believe non-exempt is correct. He does receive overtime pay and time-and-a-half pay on Sunday's)

      Comment


      • #4
        Yes, he is non-exempt. I'll see how or if the state 7-day rule applies; I don't know off the top of my head. It may take a few hours. Or our legal research expert, Betty, may get there first.
        The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

        Comment


        • #5
          The info I have is that Ma. has a "limited" one day off in seven rule with numerous exceptions. The main exception being required to work w/o a day off in seven for a legitimate business necessity. That exception/reason could be used just about anytime I would think. If I find anything add'l., I will post it.

          cbg - if you find anything more, please post info. I would be interested. Thanks. Betty3
          Last edited by Betty3; 01-02-2008, 06:17 PM. Reason: spelling
          Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

          Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

          Comment


          • #6
            Ok - after some searching, I did find this: Ma.

            MGL c. 149
            One day of rest in seven; operation of business on Sunday; violations


            Section 48. Every employer of labor engaged in carrying on any manufacturing, mechanical or mercantile establishment or workshop in the commonwealth shall allow every person, except those specified in section fifty, but including watchmen and employees maintaining fires, employed in such manufacturing, mechanical or mercantile establishment or workshop at least twenty-four consecutive hours of rest, which shall include an unbroken period comprising the hours between eight o’clock in the morning and five o‘clock in the evening, in every seven consecutive days. No employer shall operate any such manufacturing, mechanical or mercantile establishment or workshop on Sunday unless he has complied with section fifty-one. Whoever violates this section shall be punished by a fine of three hundred dollars.

            Chapter 149: Section 49. Establishments not subject to Sunday work and rest days; railroads or railways



            Section 49. Sections forty-seven and forty-eight shall not apply to establishments used for the manufacture or distribution of gas, electricity, milk or water, to hotels, to the transportation of food, nor to the sale or delivery of food by or in establishments other than restaurants. This section shall not apply to railroads or railways as defined in section one of chapter one hundred and sixty.

            Chapter 149: Section 50. Work not subject to Sunday work and rest days



            Section 50. Sections forty-seven and forty-eight shall not apply to (a) janitors; (b) employees whose duties include no work on Sunday other than (1) setting sponges in bakeries, (2) caring for live animals, (3) caring for machinery; (c) employees engaged in the preparation, printing, publication, sale or delivery of newspapers; (d) farm or personal service; (e) any labor called for by an emergency that could not reasonably have been anticipated; (f) pharmacists employed in drug stores.

            chapter 149: Section 50A. One day of rest in seven for watchmen and employees maintaining fires, violations


            Section 50A. Every person employed as a watchman in establishments other than those described in section forty-eight, or employed in maintaining fires in such establishments, but not including janitors in residential apartment houses, shall be allowed at least twenty-four consecutive hours of rest in every seven consecutive days. No provision of any other section of this chapter shall be construed as limiting the rights given by this section. The term “watchman” as used in section forty-eight or the term “watchman” as used in this section shall include guards in banks, as defined in section one of chapter one hundred and sixty-seven. An employer violating this section shall be punished by a fine of three hundred dollars.

            Section 51. Before operating on Sunday, every employer subject to section forty-eight or fifty A shall post in a conspicuous place on the premises a schedule containing a list of his employees who are required or allowed to work on Sunday, and designating the day of rest for each. No employee shall be required or allowed to work on the day of rest designated for him.

            Chapter 149: Section 51A. Exemption for special circumstances; days of rest and Sunday business

            Section 51A. The attorney general, if it is proved to his satisfaction that special circumstances require an exemption from section forty-eight, may grant such exemption under such conditions as he deems necessary for a period not exceeding sixty days
            Last edited by Betty3; 01-02-2008, 07:42 PM. Reason: added sect 51 & 51A
            Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

            Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

            Comment


            • #7
              Thanks, Betty. I was in a rush when the OP got back to us and didn't have time to look till now - thanks for checking!

              OP, since the law relates to mercantile establishments and your brother works in retail, it would appear that it does apply to him. If I were in his shoes, I'd check with the employer first, either his manager or HR, whichever he is more comfortable with. You'll note that at the end of the portion of the MGL Betty has quoted, there is a notation that the AG can grant an employer an exemption from the day of rest law, so he'll want to see if the employer does have such an exemption first. If they do not, his recourse is to contact the AG's office (they function as the state DOL in this state).
              The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

              Comment


              • #8
                Thank you both very much. I will pass the information along to my brother. I'm sure he will be very greatful.


                Happy New Year!

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                • #9
                  You're welcome & Happy New Year to you, too.
                  Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

                  Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

                  Comment

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