Do employees have to take meal and rest breaks?

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in Compensation and Benefits,Human Resources

Q. I know Colorado requires employers to provide unpaid meal breaks and paid rest periods. But what if an employee is offered the meal period or rest period and prefers to continue working? Is that permitted?

A. Yes. An employee covered by Colorado’s Minimum Wage Order No. 24 is entitled to such breaks. However, an employer complies with the law merely by offering breaks to employees. The employee is free to choose to continue working rather than taking the break.

A careful employer will want to be able to show that the offer was made, in case there is a dispute later.

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