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Time Directive

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Our advice regarding working hours, rest breaks and holiday entitlements has been updated for 2011 with additional information. Let us break it down for you!

Rest Breaks

The Working Time Regulations entitle all (* see Exceptions below) Workers and Employees to: A minimum Daily Rest period of 11 hours uninterrupted rest between finishing your job and starting the next day. (Workers aged between 15-18 are entitled to a minimum daily rest break of 12 hours).

A Weekly Rest period of 24 hours uniterrupted rest within each seven day period (Young Workers aged 15-18 are entitled to 48 hours); or, at the Employers choice, a Fortnightly Rest Period of 48 consecutive hours within each 14 day period.driver-with-digital-tachograph

The weekly rest period should not include any part of the daily rest period.

A break of 20 minutes if your daily working day is more than 6 hours long (or 30 minutes if you are aged 15-18 years and you work more than 4.5 hours at a stretch).

If you are an Agency Temp then the Employer you are working for (not the Agency who employs you) is responsible for you receiving these minimum rest breaks. The first 2 type of rest periods are generally unpaid. The 20 minute break may be paid or unpaid, depending on what it says in your contract of employment. For more information on rest breaks please see the Direct Gov website here. * Certain Industries and circumstances (including the Film and TV Industry, Press and Radio) are exempt from these rest break provisions and can legitimately ask you to work into your breaks if: you are a shift worker who may not be able to take their daily or weekly rest periods between shifts. Shift Workers are defined as those engaged in activities involving periods of work that are split up over the day and those who work according to a certain shift pattern where workers ‘succeed’ each other at the same work station. The shift pattern may be continuous or not, but will involve the need for workers to work at different times over a given period of days or weeks.

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Provided there is no foreseeable risk to your Health and Safety, and Your Employer has given you the chance of having the rest periods but you choose not to (Employers are only obliged to ensure you take the rest breaks if you wish). You will therefore not be entitled to compensatory rest.

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