How long a lunch hour am I entitled to if I work for 9 hours?

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Suetheramble | 19:18 Sat 11th Dec 2010 | Jobs
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and are there any guides to if I should be paid for this lunch time?


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you don't need to be paid for breaks
ps i think the minimum is 20 mins after working 6 hours
I believe that you can't work for more that 4.5 hours without a break - we get half an hour lunch break and we are not paid for it. In other words, the official working day in 9-5 but we are paid for 7.5 hours.
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If you have only just started the job, you are entitled to 2 30 minute inpaid breaks during a 9 hour day, you will only be paid 8 hours a day, in the 40 years i have been working, 32 of them full time, I have never known of anyone being paid or thier lunch breaks.
If you have worked for the same company for several years, you may get an unpaid lunch hour and 2 paid 15 - 20 minute breaks but the breaks would be at the discretion of the company and can be denied for the needs of the business
you can work up to 6 hours without a brek btw, (if over 18)
Thanks dotty - 6 hours is a long time, I would fall over if I didn't get something to eat in the middle of the day..... and we are supposed to get up every 55 minutes so we don't get VDU problems....
It probably varies for different industries, but drivers cannot go for more than 6 hours duty without a fifteen minute break. (European Working Time Directive)

For a duty between 6 and 9 hours, minimum total breaks of 30 minutes are required.

Whether the breaks are paid or not depends on the wording of the employment contract.
As I said - 20 minutes after 6 hours.
So you are entitled to a minimum 20 minute break in your working day. Unlikely to be paid
As shown in Bedknobs's link, my answer comes under 'mobile workers' so is probably not relevant to you.
I have always been paid for my lunchbreaks.....
Guess it depends on terms and conditions of your contract anyway, sue - it should specify in your contract.
It will be in your staff handbook rather than your individual contract i would imagine

craft if you've been paid to sit on your 'arris for an hour a day you were very lucky!
Yes, 20 minutes is the minimum break. It will almost certainly be unpaid. I'm not aware of anything in law that supports dotty's contention that you are entitled to two 30 minute breaks, but I recall dotty (maybe under another name) has meantioned this point in previous threads and believes it to be true
Dotty at BT I was contracted to and paid for a 42 hour working week 5 of these hours being lunch breaks.
Well my employer allows me 2 x 30 minute unpaid breaks and I work 8 - 5-30 5 days a week, in my last job, because I had started it before the legislation changed, I worked 9-6 5 days a week and had 2 paid 20 minute breaks a day and an hour unpaid, but it changed about 18 months ago the legislation i understand,
Where I worked we were paid for our lunch break, providing we did not leave the factory. Most of us ate our lunch while doing paperwork at our desk. When the smoking ban came in that stopped and we were given a 30 minute break without pay.
Not for the first time Dotty is basing her answers, in relation to working hours, upon the practices of her own employer, rather than on statute law.

As others have indicated, if your shift EXCEEDS 6 hours, you're entitled to a single (unpaid) 20 minute break, which can't be at the start or end of your shift. (If your shift is EXACTLY 6 hours you have no entitlement to any breaks). Your entitlement is neither 'pro rata' nor 'cumulative'. i.e. if you work a 12, 18 or 24 hour shift you're still only entitled to a single break of 20 minutes.

Your length of service has no bearing whatsoever upon your statutory entitlement. However a worker who is under 18 is entitled to a single (unpaid) break of 30 minutes if their shift exceeds 4½ hours.

There are some occupations where there is no automatic right to any rest break (e.g. running a railway station - I write from experience!) but you should get 'compensatory rest' instead.

It's all in Bednobs' link.

Yes Chris, but if someone has to work 5 days a week from 8 til 5.30, but is only contracted to 39 hours, there are hours that they have to take as breaks, it's not always about statutary entitlement, it;s about the shifts you have to do over the days you have to be there, so once again using real experience rather than hyperthetical situations gives a clearer answer in my opinion.
With you on that perspective dotty - we have so many hours per day in the contract, fortunately as we are in the office we can take the breaks to suit us, not to suit other team members.

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