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Lunch Breaks

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  • Lunch Breaks

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    Does anyone know the labor law in the state of Maryland regarding lunch breaks? My question is this: If a salaried employee works 8 hours or more, and is entitled to a lunch break, if this employee decides to spend his/her 30 minute lunch sleeping instead of eating, is this agains any laws?

    The employee in question is in the construction industry and works out in the field on the job site. When it is time for his lunch break, (since there is no designated place set up to have lunch on the job site), he returns to his vehicle and instead of eating would rather take a 30 minute nap. He always returns to work on time, and has another employee who can vouch for him.

    One day last week, another employee called the employer and said that he saw a fellow employee sleeping on the job. He was then called by the employer and was told that he is not allowed to sleep. This employee, (the sleeper) explained that he was on "his time", during lunch. The employer said that he didn't care and that he is not to sleep at work, on lunch time or not.

    Can this be done? I thought that lunch time was yours and you could do whatever you wanted on your lunch as long as it's not illegal.

    Can someone please explain this to me and let me know if he can be told not to sleep on a lunch break?

    Thanks so much for your help!

    [email protected]

  • #2
    Lunch Period

    The employer does not have the right to tell the employee that he/she can not sleep during his lunch break...though the employer can require that the sleep occur away from the work premises.
    Lillian Connell

    Forum Moderator
    www.laborlawtalk.com

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