Meal and Break Rules in Connecticut

An employer in Connecticut may not require any person to work for seven and one-half or more consecutive hours without at least 30 consecutive minutes for a meal. The meal period must be scheduled at least two hours after the workday begins and at least two hours before it ends.

Exemptions may be given by the Labor Commissioner if the Commissioner finds that: (1) requiring compliance would be adverse to public safety; (2) the duties of a position can only be performed by one employee; (3) the employer employs less than four employees on a shift at a single place of business, provided the exemption only applies to the employees on that shift; or (4) the continuous nature of the employer's operations, such as chemical production or research experiments, requires that employees be available to respond to urgent or unusual conditions at all times and the employees are compensated for break and meal periods.

Exempt employment includes professional employees who are certified by the state board of education and employed by a local or regional board of education of any town or regional school district to work directly with children and employers that provide 30 or more total minutes of paid rest or meal periods to employees within each seven and one-half hour work period.

Employers and employees may enter into a written agreement providing for a different schedule of meal periods.