Giving clarity to the rules governing meal breaks, the California Court of Appeal, in Brinker v. Superior Court, 165 Cal. App. 4th 25 (2008), held that while California employers cannot impede, discourage or dissuade employees from taking meal breaks, they need only provide, not ensure, that such breaks are taken. The California Supreme Court subsequently granted the plaintiffs' petition to review this decision. Consequently, the Court of Appeal's decision in Brinker cannot be relied upon and uncertainty concerning employer obligations with respect to meal breaks will remain until the California Supreme Court issues its final ruling.
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