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Exempt staff luch break New York

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  • Exempt staff luch break New York

    I am a professional in a hospital setting and am paid for 40 hours a week. The hours are 8:30 -5:00pm. Although I am told I have a 1/2 hour lunch I rarely sit uninterupted for lunch. I get paged, phone rings, knocks on the door. First of all is this legal? Would I be in my legal rights to turn off my pager during lunch for 1/2 hour since I am not paid for it. We are not allowed to come in late or leave early. I feel we are treated as hourly staff but without the benefit of any overtime. I live in NYS which I understand has very few laws protecting the employee.
    1
    Justme1234
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    1
    PattyMD
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  • #2
    If you are exempt, you are not legally entitled to any additional compensation whatsoever, no matter how many hours you work, on call, answering the pager, whatever. You can contact the state Dept. of Labor to inquire as to whether or not the meal period requirements apply to exempt employees, but they often do not.
    I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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    • #3
      Thank you. By compensation do you mean monetary only or "comp" time? Does anyone know if I would be in my legal rights to turn off my pager for my 1/2 hour unpaid lunch (I am exempt salary). I feel I am :1st not getting an uninterupted lunch and second the company is "squeezing" more time out of us than they are w illing to pay since the work week is 40 hours but without lunch it is really a 42 1/2 work week.

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      • #4
        By compensated I mean anything over and above your regular salary, including pay and/or comp time.

        Here's the deal. As an exempt employee, you are expected to work whatever hours are necessary to get the job done. If you are expected to have your pager on when you are at lunch, and you arbitrarily decide to turn it off, you could be disciplined up to and including termination. The ONLY thing that MIGHT change my opinion would be if the state DOL advised that the meal period law applies to exempt employees as well as nonexempt.
        I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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        • #5
          Spoke to Dept. of Labor

          I spoke with Dept. of Labor today and was told exempt staff are covered under the same law as hourly workers in re: to lunch . Exempt staff is by law to get 1/2 hr. uninterupted lunch. She told me I was in my legal rights to turn off my pager during my 1/2 hr lunch.

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          • #6
            Which is why I said my opinion might change. However, to be blunt, you are an exempt employee. You are expected to work whatever hours are necessary to get the job done. If you are paged, do you think a patient might actually need you? I'm sorry if you take this the wrong way, and I think you probably will, but I really believe you are being petty with this pager situation.

            In the nearly 20 years I've worked as an exempt employee, not ONCE have I seen one who has insisted on an uninterrupted meal period, even when the state law provides for it.
            I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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            • #7
              Well I am assuming you are an MD. I am not and frankly they don't pay me enough to not take my unpaid lunch.I believe a break during the day in an extremely hectic work environment will refresh and ultimately help the patients I work with even more. The pages I get are not life and death and can wait 1/2 hr it's just that someone who has finished their own lunch break (union worker)wants to get it off their plate so they page me rather than leave a message. If you are familiar with a hospital setting then you will know that everyone's mindset is "it had to be done yesterday" when in fact it does not.i calculated the figures over the past many years I have worked there and it adds up to over $24,000 of work time that was squeezed out of me because I ate at my desk, gulped food down almost chocked talking on the phone and developed stomach problems because I would eat cold food to "save time". So if you think that is petty my friend then you obviously are an MD.

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              • #8
                Well I am assuming you are an MD.

                You are assuming incorrectly. The MD in Patty's screen name stands for the state she lives in, not her profession.
                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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                • #9
                  And I work a minimum of 10 hours per day and very seldom take more than 15 minutes to eat lunch and then, at my desk, available to my employees and my customers.

                  You know what they say about "assuming".
                  I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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                  • #10
                    Your post was deleted because of the language you used. You are free to disagree but you are not entitled to abuse the posters.
                    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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