Can an employer tell you to write in your time card that you took your legally required breaks even though you didn’t?

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Can an employer tell you to write in your time card that you took your legally required breaks even though you didn’t?

My wife works for a restaurant and her employer doesnt let them take breaks due to the old no one is there to relieve you excuse. She works 11 hours with no break at all some days/nights. She says she is fine with this

agreement but I feel she, as well as the other waitresses, are being bullied into working for free. If you don’t write in your breaks you would be fired she says. The owner has already been sued for this before but got legal advise and this is the new system shes implemented in the last 5 years my wife has worked there. This

is already a shady business by the way. Hand written checks with mistakes being erased with white out. Who is to say that the owner doesn’t white everything out that was paid with cash and pocket said tax free revenue. Nightly money drops with said money getting stolen in the parking lot so my wife doesnt get a check for 3 weeks some months. They have been in business for over 30 years and it’s a pretty well known spot with lots of customers.

Asked on August 8, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, California

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 1 year ago | Contributor

What you describe is illegal: employees who are entitled to breaks must get them; employees must be paid for all work done, including overtime as applicable; and tippable employees must get their share of all tips, including those paid in cash; etc. Your wife seems to have grounds to file several different complaints with the state department of labor, if she chose, and may be entitled to some back compensation.


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