Employment – Working Hours

Working hours are a critical element of any contract of employment, and can give rise to various issues that may leave you wanting help from an employment law solicitor.  If your own working hours leaving you wanting expert employment law advice – do reach out, our solicitors are here to help.





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Working Hours FAQs

Working hours are the hours you work each day, week, month or other period. The Working Time Regulations limit the permitted working time to 48 hours each week for most occupations, which is averaged over a 17 week period. However, you can agree to work more hours a week.

It is generally accepted that 7 or 8 hours a day for 5 working days a week is full time working, but each employer could have a different definition.

No – working hours don’t include time taken on lunch breaks, or travelling to or from work. But if you’re working over lunch, like doing a training session or team meeting over lunch, then that will count as working time.

If you work more than 6 hours a day, you’re entitled to an unbroken 20 minute rest break, which should be taken away from your workspace. You must also get a daily rest break of at least 11 hours between working days, and weekly breaks of at least 24 hours a week, or 48 hours every 14 days.

It’s a good idea to take a short break from your screen every hour. HSE guidance suggests that “short frequent breaks are more satisfactory than occasional longer breaks”.

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Whether you’re an employee or employer, and you’re looking for expert employment law advice – QLAW CAN HELP! Reach out in whatever way best suits you. We’re looking forward to speaking to you very shortly!