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Pregnancy/breaks Maryland

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  • Pregnancy/breaks Maryland

    I am two months pregnant and we were allowed to eat in the office. Then one day I cleaned it and found a baby brown roach. Told the store manager, there are four stores, and there is no food to be allowed. Even though it is stated that if you are over 18, which I am, i am not forced to take a lunch. However we do wait seven hours to do so. My problem is this: i had my doctor write a note stating that i should be allowed to take a lunch after 4 hrs my shift starts. They did not follow it and said that thy will not allow me to eat at all. Is this allowed?
    Also, if we dont take a lunch or any breaks can they take it out of your paycheck? and what if they make you clock out on a break that is less than 20 min. is that legal?

  • #2
    Maryland law does not require that employees over the age of 18 be given breaks, even lunch breaks. Pregnancy is not considered a disabling condition under the ADA; therefore, no accomodation is required even if the doctor writes you a note. They are free to disregard the doctor's request.

    They cannot deduct for breaks that are not taken. (However, if they want you to take a break and you do not, you can be disciplined or even fired.) The law does not prohibit them from requiring you to clock out for breaks of under 20 minutes as long as you are paid for that time, since both Federal and state law requires that breaks of under 20 minutes be paid breaks.
    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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    • #3
      One slight clarification, though CBG is correct as always. It is legal to make you clock out for breaks no matter what the duration. It is only illegal to dock you for breaks under 20 minutes. Your employer may require you clock out to make sure the breaks are under the limit, to monitor when breaks are taken, account for who is on the clock when, to see how many breaks are taken or any other reason they wish. That part, contrary to popular beleif, is legal.
      I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by cbg View Post
        Maryland law does not require that employees over the age of 18 be given breaks, even lunch breaks. .
        When I was hired I was told by HR that MD labour law requires the employer to provide one 10 minute break for every 2 hrs worked and one half hour break for every 4 hours worked. This is the first time I am aware that MD labour law does not require the employer to allow the employee any breaks. Can you please refer me to the proper MD labour law publication that explains this.

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        • #5
          If you're asking for a law that says it's ok to not give breaks to employees in Maryland, there is none. Maryland law doesn't address the issue of breaks at all. Because there is no law, employers are not required to give breaks.
          I am not able to respond to private messages. Thanks!

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          • #6
            Your HR is wrong. No such law exists. (In any state - NO state requires breaks as often as that. The most employee friendly states, as far as breaks go, require one ten minute break for every four hours worked and a half hour meal break for an eight hour day.) But as Marketeer explains, we can't put you in touch with a law that doesn't exist.

            The law says what an employer MUST do and what they MUST NOT do. It does not explain what an employer MAY do. An employer in MD (and in at least half the states) MAY offer a break if they choose to, but are neither required nor prohibited from doing so. Therefore, the law does not address the question at all.
            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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            • #7
              Here is the closest you will get to a citation. It is straight from the DLLR website

              http://www.dllr.state.md.us/labor/wa...unchbreaks.htm

              There is no law requiring an employer to provide breaks, including lunch breaks, for workers 18 years old or older (See section VI. D.). An employer who chooses to provide a break, however, does not have to pay wages for lunch periods or other breaks in excess of 20 minutes where the employee is free to leave the worksite (or workstation if leaving the workplace is physically impractical), in fact takes their lunch or break (whether freely choosing to leave or remain at the worksite), and the employee does not actually perform work. If employees are told their pay will be reduced each day by one-half hour for lunch, and they are not free to take this lunch period without an expectation or reasonable understanding that they must work or be on hand to work, they must be paid for the time. A "reasonable understanding" that they must work or be on hand to work is a condition in which it is generally known, or the employee reasonably believes, that failure to perform work (or be available "on hand" to perform work) during their break, will result in some negative effect on employment.
              I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

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