What do I do if my employer has not been giving breaks or lunches?

Currently I work 7 hour shifts, I know i get a 10 and a 30 but due to my job I am driving from place to place in the work day. I am not alotted enough time to get done everything so I’m forced to not take a lunch or a 10. Previously I worked for the same company in a different position. Working 5-6 hour shifts and was advised to work through my breaks to get done on time. Do I have any legal standing for a case? What steps should I take in order to come to a resolution?

Asked on May 31, 2016 under Employment Labor Law, California


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

In CA, most workers must be receive “penalty pay” for any missed breaks or meals. If they miss one or both rest breaks, they must be paid 1 hour penalty pay. They can be paid up to 2 hours penalty pay for their work day (1 hour for a missed meal break, 1 hour for missed rest break/s). Penalty pay is not counted towards overtime. At this point, you can file a claim with the the Department of Industrial Relations and/or consult directly with a local attorney. 

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