Meal and Rest Break Violations

In many cases we are able to use non-exempt employees’ recorded clock-in and clock-out times to measure the timing and length of recorded meal punches and determine if any are unrecorded, short, late, or interrupted. When time clock system data are not available, we can identify likely meal breaks using alternative data sources, including POS terminals, scanners, phone records, driver logs, GPS, or computer log on/off information. In addition to quantifying and valuing these instances, we can examine the data for trends to address class certification.


Cashiers at a retail chain alleged that their meal periods were short and interrupted because they were regularly called back to work before the end of their break. The time clocks were set up so that once an employee clocked out for a meal, she could not clock back in for at least 30 minutes, making it impossible for the time clock data to reflect these violations.


To test the validity of these claims, we linked the cash register data that tracks sales transactions to the time clock data to see if cashiers were actually working during the time in which they were clocked out. Instances of such behavior were infrequent and restricted to a small number of employees. This analysis helped defeat class certification.

Connect With Us

Start the conversation today by contacting us below.



Welch Consulting Practice Areas

Expert Services in Economics and Statistics.