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Exempt Employee Break - California

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  • Exempt Employee Break - California

    I'm an exempt employee. There's no rules in our employee handbook about me having to take my 15 min break. I took a hour lunch yesterday and did not want to take any extra breaks that will cause me to have to stay late to make up for my 8 hour shift. My new manager is trying to force me to take a break which would cause me to have to stay later than normal to make up my 8 hrs. From what I've read, I don't have to work the full 8 hrs as long as I get all my work completed and I don't have to take any breaks if I don't want to. Is that legal for her to force me to take a break if I'm exempt?

  • #2
    Yes your boss can require you to take 15 minute breaks, which count as paid time.

    Yes your boss can require you to work a full 8 hours or more. There is no "as long as you get your job done" law.

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    • #3
      Agreed. Being an exempt employee allows the employer not to have to pay you overtime. It doesn't mean you get to dictate your hours of work. If your employer insists you take a 15 minute break, then you take a 15 minute break. If that means you have to work over at the end of the day to get your work completed, then that's just the way it is.

      From what I've read, I don't have to work the full 8 hrs as long as I get all my work completed and I don't have to take any breaks if I don't want to.

      I have no idea what you've been reading. If it's a book, throw it out. If it's something on the internet, then don't waste your time at that website again.

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      • #4
        There is NO state, where any employee, exempt or non-exempt, gets to make their own rules about when they work or whether or not they must take a break. Exempt or non-exempt, if the employer says take a break, you take a break. Failure to do so is insubordination. And if you are reading somewhere that as long as you are exempt you don't have to take a break if you don't want to, then what you are reading is wrong.
        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.

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        • #5
          The bottom line is you always have to do what your employer tells you to
          do as long as it's not illegal (this isn't) or unsafe....
          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.

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