Provided by:  Jennifer Kirschenbaum, Esq.

    June 22, 2017



Hi Jennifer

On Saturday's we are only open a half day - from 8:30-12.  Do I have to give my employees a break?

Thanks, Dr. L


Each state is different.  In NY, Employees need to work at least 6 hour shifts to qualify for a break or lunch break - 

"The noon day meal period extends from 11:00 A.M. to 2:00 P.M.  An employee who works a shift of more than six hours, which extends over the noon day meal period, is entitled to at least 30 minutes off within that period for the meal period.” 


Q: Must an employer give meal periods and "breaks" to workers? 

A: Employees who:

  •  Work a shift of more than six hours starting before 11 AM


  •  Continue until 2 PM


  •  Have an uninterrupted lunch period of


  •  Half an hour between 11 AM and 2 PM

For meal period requirements, go to:
Meal periods do not count as work time, thus employers need not pay for that time.
Employers do not have to provide other "breaks", such as for "rest periods" or "coffee breaks." But, if an employer permits a break (of up to 20 minutes), then they should pay it as work time.