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elaws - employment laws assistance for workers and small businesses

- FLSA Hours Worked Advisor

We next consider whether you are completely relieved from duty during your meal period. You are not completely relieved from duty if you are required to perform any duties or do any work while eating. This includes inactive or active work.

For example:

  • An office employee who is required to eat at his or her desk is not relieved from duty if he or she is required to answer the telephone or respond to customers, even if no calls are actually received.
  • A factory worker who is required to watch his or her machine while eating is working and not completely relieved from duty.

It is not necessary that an employee be permitted to leave the premises if he or she is completely relieved from duty during the meal period.

Are you completely relieved from duty during your meal period?