What are the legal requirements for lunch breaks? Is an employee allowed to work a shortened lunch break, i.e. 30 mins rather than 1 hour, in order to leave 30 minutes early?

Posted in : First Tuesday Q&A NI on 4 February 2014
Arthur Cox
Arthur Cox
Issues covered:

Under the Working Time Regulations (Northern Ireland) 1998 (“WTR”) adult workers are entitled to a rest break of 20 minutes if the working day is more than six hours.

Furthermore, the WTR stipulate that adult workers are entitled to 11 hours’ uninterrupted rest per day and 24 hours’ uninterrupted rest per week. There are also additional provisions in relation to workers carrying out monotonous or pre-determined work and for young workers (who are under 18 but over compulsory school age).

Employers must ensure that workers can take their rest periods or breaks but are not required to force workers to take them. Workers can elect to work through a rest period or break, provided they do not

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Back to Q&A's This article is correct at 02/09/2015

The information in this article is provided as part of Legal-Island's Employment Law Hub. We regret we are not able to respond to requests for specific legal or HR queries and recommend that professional advice is obtained before relying on information supplied anywhere within this article.

Arthur Cox
Arthur Cox

The main content of this article was provided by Arthur Cox. Contact telephone number is +44 28 9026 2673 or email rosemary.lundy@arthurcox.com

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