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Do I have to give my employees breaks?

On Behalf of  | Dec 31, 2021 | Employment Law

Employment laws vary from state to state. Some states have more employee-friendly laws whereas others do not.

One topic that can be very different between states is break laws. FindLaw explains that New Jersey only has limited break requirements.

The rule

In general, the state does not require employers to provide you with a break of any kind during your working hours. If your employer gives you a meal break, that is only that employer’s policy. Nothing is requiring the employer to do so.

You must understand the policies at your place of employment, especially when you start a new job. If an employer does not offer any breaks, then you have no recourse to make them give you one.

The exception

There is an exception. State law does require employers to give minors a break. Employers must give minors at least a 30-minute break after they work five hours in one day. It is illegal for a minor to work over five hours without at least 30 minutes off the clock.

For everyone else, the law does not require a break. You should be aware of this because it may create issues. That is why it is essential to understand company policy. The law in New Jersey leaves it up to employers to determine what, if any, type of break to offer.

Fortunately, most employers understand employees need some rest during the workday. They will usually provide you with at least a 30-minute meal break. Some employers may also give shorter breaks throughout the day.


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