Does Ohio Law Require Breaks at Work?
Ohio has no law requiring employers to offer paid breaks, or any breaks for that matter, to their employees. We know this may come as a shock, as it is a common misconception that employers must provide breaks during an eight-hour shift but this is simply not the case. Another common misconception is that you are entitled to a lunch break. You are not. You are not entitled to any break, paid or otherwise, as an Ohio employee. Employers may choose to offer breaks but you are not legally entitled to them. Many employers do choose to offer breaks but it is important to know, they are not legally required to do so.
In better news, federal law and Ohio law mandate that employees must be paid for each minute they spend actually working. For instance, if you are given a lunch break but you spend that time working, you must be paid for it. If you are eating lunch and not working, however, your employer can choose not to pay you for that time. Do not feel pressured or obligated to clock out and work through your lunch. If you are working, you must be paid or the employer is violating the law.
The reality of ensuring employees receive all the money they deserve for the time they spend working can become more complicated than the preceding explanation indicates. An experienced equal compensation lawyer in Columbus, Ohio, may need to file a lawsuit for a worker who believes his or her employer treated them differently from co-workers in allowing breaks or in refusing to pay for hours worked.
All Employees Must Be Treated Equally When It Comes to Breaks
Many businesses and agencies in Ohio grant employees a few breaks each workday even though no law requires them to do so. When an employer does have a policy of permitting morning and afternoon breaks and/or a 30 or 60 minute lunch period, every employee should be allowed to use those periods to step away from work.
Federal labor regulations make it clear that taking an unpaid break means that you stop actually working. If you are taking a break, you should not be working. If you are working, you must be paid. Working through a break counts as working, and an employee who does that must be compensated for the time.
Breaks May Factor Into Overtime Calculations
The employer can, and probably should, ask workers who get paid by the hour to clock out when they go on break and to clock back in when they report back from break.
Many disputes about unpaid overtime come down to whether an employee actually spent more than 40 hours per week working and whether the employer recognized that this happened. An important note in this regard is that tipped employees such as waiters, waitresses, bartenders, and hotel staff must receive overtime pay when they work more than 40 hours. Therefore, tracking breaks and shift work is especially important for people who take tips, as well as non-tipped employees.
Columbus employment lawyers at the Friedmann Firm offers free and confidential consultations, and we welcome calls to 614.610.9755. Appointments can also be scheduled online by filling out this contact form.
Rachel was absolutely amazing. As an attorney she really took the time to really listen to my concerns. She was honest and kept me informed every step of the way. The outcome was favorable on my behalf and I appreciate her efforts to achieve a good outcome. I would highly recommend her and the Friedmann firm to represent me if ever needed in future.
Working with Rachel Sabo from Friedmann Firm was absolutely amazing! She upholds integrity, honesty and without a doubt fights for what is right! Rachel was extremely transparent and real! Please don’t let wrong be right, Rachel will strive to advocate and put her whole heart in obtaining resolve in your situation! What an absolute blessing, she won my case in less than 1 week💪
My experience with the Friedmann Firm is an absolute 5 stars. From my very first call with Karen, to all of my communication with Rachel, everything exceeded all of my expectations. Rachel and Karen were so caring and understanding in a very sensitive situation. They responded immediately to any questions or concerns I had. I would HIGHLY recommend the Friedmann Firm. They are caring, professional, understanding, and I would trust them with any issue I have in the future.
Rachel and the Friedmann Firm were fantastic to work with. The thought of needing an employment lawyer was scary for me, it was confusing and complex. But Rachel listened, asked questions and took time to really understand me and my priorities. I felt calm, supported and excited for the first time in weeks after talking to her!! We worked together to review everything, set expectations and meet my priorities! Thanks Rachel and team for all your work!!!
Rachel Friedmann of the Friedman Firm was my attorney for a very recent legal matter. I would highly recommend Rachel based on her legal knowledge, her honest appraisal of the matter and expected outcomes, her open communication and timely responses to my questions and the matter itself, and her steadfastness in dealing with the opposing counsel until a final agreement was reached.
Rachel and her staff went over and above the call of duty to help me achieve fiscal resolution to my legal issue. She wasn’t always available to talk but was always responsive via text and email when in court out of the office and even on vacation. I feel she earned her percentage cut.
Couldn’t be happier with the representation I received from Jamie Bailey on my civil litigation case. She worked tirelessly to resolve the case and in the end negotiated a fair settlement on my behalf. I would highly recommend her to anyone! Thanks for everything Friedman law firm.
Friedman Firm was a great help in a difficult time in my life. They went above and beyond to get me back on track. Rachel was so good to work with and is extremely knowledgeable about the law and employment rights. Can't thank them enough for all there hard work. Highly recommend them to anyone.
The Friedmann Firm (specifically Pete Friedmann) represented me through what seemed like a never ending employment discrimination suit. The suit was filed just before Covid shut everything down in 2020. Add to that a former employer who refused to admit fault. In spite of all of that, Pete stood resolute in his representation of me and working for the best outcome for me. We ended up settling prior to trial and I was more than satisfied with the results. Pete was always available to answer questions and reassure me throughout this process. I highly recommend The Friedmann Firm!
Pete Friedmann and his firm are fantastic. He represented me for more than a year going through a suit with a previous employer. He walked me through every step of the process and was always quick to respond to any questions I had. My settlement came in and we parted ways with both sides being pleased with the outcome. I highly recommend the Friedmann firm and wouldn’t hesitate to use them again in the future if the need arose. Thank you, Pete!
Rachel and the Friedmann Firm have been amazing to work with. Rachel was very helpful, listened to our concerns and took our case. She communicated well throughout and really worked for us. We were very well represented!
I loved working with The Friedmann Firm. Rachel and Jamie are exceptional lawyers and were diligent in reviewing my case and letting me know of my options. Jamie was extremely thorough and handled even the smallest details of my case with ease. The entire process was seamless and they were always quick to respond to emails and calls. I would definitely recommend working with The Friedmann Firm.
I would recommend Rachel Sabo Friedmann and the Friedmann firm for severance negotiations. Rachel was always available and responsive and made an effort to ensure I was updated on every step of the process. Her diligent efforts produced a prompt resolution and we are very happy with the results!