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Rest breaks and working timeBack

MILSLogo2What is the position with rest breaks for Sales Executives? When it is busy our staff do not tend to take lunch breaks which suits us because it means they can meet customer demand but we want to make sure we are not breaching any laws”.

Where any worker works 6 hours or more, legally they are entitled to a 20 minute rest break. There has been a mix of case law on the subject but ultimately employers should not be seen to prevent their staff from taking breaks, even if the staff themselves do not expressly request them.

In a recent case of Grange v Abellio London Limited the Employment Appeal Tribunal held that employers must take active steps to ensure their working arrangements enable workers to take their required rest breaks. The entitlement to rest breaks is intended to be actively encouraged by employers for the protection of workers’ health and safety. Employers will therefore be considered to refuse an employee’s rest break if they put in place working arrangements that fail to allow the taking of such breaks i.e. agreeing an employee works a shorter day if they work through their lunch. It doesn’t matter therefore if an employee doesn’t actually ask to take their rest break, time should be allowed within their working day for them to take them.
Kirsty Swan
Solicitor
Motor Industry Legal Services

Motor Industry Legal Services (MILS Solicitors) provides fully comprehensive legal advice and representation to UK motor retailers for one annual fee. It is the only law firm in the UK which specialises in motor law and motor trade law. MILS currently advises over 1,000 individual businesses within the sector as well as the Retail Motor Industry Federation (RMI) and its members.

Posted by Sue Robinson on 13/01/2017