Louisiana Labor Law Breaks
Regarding rest periods for workers 18 years of age and older, Louisiana falls back on federal law. Only if it lasts less than 20 minutes must a meal break be paid if an employer wishes to offer one. As long as the employee is entirely relieved of all obligations, breaks longer than 30 minutes are considered meal intervals and do not require payment. a minimum of 30 minutes unpaid for workers under 18 who put in 5 straight hours.
Louisiana Holiday Laws
Louisiana does not have a law in regard to holiday pay, nor is there a federal law on the subject. This means that employers are not required to allow employees to have days off for holidays. Federal law does state that a company or business may be open three hundred sixty-five days a year and thus requires employees to work whenever in business.
Federal holidays do not mean that all employees in the United States are to have days off. Federal holidays only are reserved for government agencies and post offices. Public service institutions require employees to work, despite holidays, every day of the year. These include hospitals, police departments, fire departments, hotels, gas stations, and others.
There is also no federal or Louisiana state law requiring employers to pay employees more on holidays. A business or company may provide the benefit of higher wages on holidays worked but are under no requirement to do so. A company may choose to close on holidays, thus providing employees with holidays off.
Family and Medical Leave
Louisiana follows the federal law in regards to allowing leave. The federal Family and Medical Leave Act allows employees to take a leave of absence from employment for medical or family reasons. This leave will not exceed twelve weeks and cannot be spread over several months. Family and medical leave is unpaid but does provide employees with job protection while on leave. A company or business cannot legally terminate an employee because he or she is on leave or if she is expectant.
Family and medical leave usually include maternity leave, care for an ill child, hospitalization, care for an elderly parent, or any other psychological or medical reason. Under United States law maternity leave allows a mother to care for newborn or adoptive parents to bond with their new children.
When an employee is on leave, a company or business may hire a temporary employee until the employee on leave returns. Often times other employees will divide tasks until the employee on leave returns. Upon returning from leave an employee is entitled to his or her former employment or employment of the same salary and benefits. If an employee desires to return from leave sooner than twelve weeks, it is at the discretion of the employer.
Overtime and Payment
The 1938 Fair Labor Standards Act states that when employees work more than forty hours in one week they are to be paid one and a half times their normal wages for the added hours. Overtime does not apply to employees who have fluctuating workweeks and are paid the same amount each week without regard to how many hours are worked.
In 2009 the federal minimum wage rose to seven dollars and twenty-five cents an hour. This required all states to raise their minimum wages to the federal level if not higher. Louisiana has the same minimum wage requirement as the federal minimum wage. Under this law, employers are not permitted to pay their employees less than the minimum requirement but may pay more if desired.