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Paid break in excess of alloted time convert to unpaid break? Florida

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  • Paid break in excess of alloted time convert to unpaid break? Florida

    Our company allows employees two paid 15-minute breaks per day, if time permits. A couple of employees are consistently going over the 15 minutes, sometimes taking as long as 30 minutes for their breaks. Our policy allows for time in excess of the alloted 15 minutes to be unpaid. This does not seem to deter the employees from taking extended breaks. I am wondering if the solution to this is to make the entire break unpaid if it goes over 15 minutes. If so, would this be legal?

    Thank you for any advice.

  • #2
    No, but it would be legal to make any breaks that exceed 20 minutes unpaid.

    Neither Federal nor Florida law requires that you provide any breaks at all. Federal law says that IF breaks are offered, breaks of under 20 minutes MUST be paid breaks.

    You can also implement whatever progressive discipline policy you may have. It is absolutely within the power of the employer to discipline those employees who violate policy. You don't need to let the tail wag the dog. If the employees are overstaying their breaks, write them up. If they continue to do so, fire them. You won't have to do that more than once or twice to show people you mean business.
    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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