Can an employer deduct hours for employee meal breaks?

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in Human Resources

Q. My company deducts 30 minutes from each day’s recorded time for employees’ meal periods. Is this proper?

A. It depends. Colorado law requires employers to provide employees a half-hour meal period for every shift in excess of five hours. If an uninterrupted meal period is provided, it does not count as work time.

However, if employees do not get a meal break or have to work any time during their meal period, then it counts as work time and a deduction would be improper. Therefore, the deduction is appropriate only if the employer can show that the employees had an uninterrupted meal period.

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