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lunch breaks

What are the state and/or federal laws in Montana regarding lunch breaks and on the clock short breaks? Is there such a guideline to follow?

There is no federal or state law that requires you to give meal breaks or shorter rest breaks to employees in Montana. Nineteen U.S. states have meal break laws that apply to many or all employees; Montana does not. It would be legal for you to not give meal or rest breaks to employees in Montana. OSHA regulations still require that the employees be allowed to use the toilet when nature calls.

The best practice is to give an employee one unpaid meal break of 30 minutes or more, plus two paid 10- to 15-minute rest breaks, on an 8-hour shift. Employees who receive these breaks are actually more productive than employees who receive no breaks. Ideally, the meal break would be mid-shift, and the two rest breaks would be in mid-morning and mid-afternoon.

The federal FLSA or Fair Labor Standards Act does not require that an employer give rest breaks to workers. However, it does require that employees be paid for any breaks that are shorter than 20 minutes.

There is no law in any state that would require you to give more frequent breaks to smokers, and it is unwise to do so.


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This entry was posted on Tuesday, July 20th, 2010 at 6:27 am and is filed under
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