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Illinois Salaried Employee Lunches

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  • Illinois Salaried Employee Lunches

    I am a manager in Illinois and frequently work 12 hour shifts. What is the required lunch I am supposed to be given and what constitutes a "lunch"? When I work with a part time employee I am not allowed to leave the premises and can not take an uninterrupted lunch. To me going in the office does not constitute a true "lunch" as I am still on the clock and can not leave the premises. Also when making a schedule I have to schedule myself for a lunch even if I don't take it, for "appearances sake" Is this illegal?

  • #2
    In Illinois, you must be provided with a meal period if you work at least 7.5 consecutive hours. There are no laws requiring rest breaks.

    If you cannot take an uninterrupted meal period, then it is not a bona fide meal period, and thus must be compensated. The mere fact that you cannot leave the premises is not, in and of itself, enough to make it compensable; however, having to stay on the premises because you are subject to being called back to work during that period is enough.

    It is irrelevant to the law, at least as far as your pay is concerned, that your employer "requires" you to record that you took a bona fide meal period when you did not, although they might be subject to a penalty or fine, since this is considered a "willful" violation.

    Now, having said all of this, there are often exceptions to these regulations if your work situation is such that your taking an uninterrupted meal period would leave the worksite with no coverage. Also, you say you are a salaried employee and a manager; I assume you mean that you are an exempt employee ("salaried" is merely a pay method). I recommend you contact the state Dept. of Labor to inquire as to whether exempt employees in Illinois must receive the same meal periods as nonexempt employees and, if so, whether your work situation would allow the employer to waive the requirement.
    Last edited by Pattymd; 11-19-2005, 04:15 AM.
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