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Q: We have several employees who choose to work through their one hour lunch break which is unpaid. They have never been asked to work through their lunch break. One has suggested that they should be paid overtime for this work. Company policy is that overtime is only paid when an employee is specifically requested by a Manager to work additional hours. Do we have to pay? A: This has been covered by an Employment Appeal Tribunal’s ruling in Blair and others v Hotel Solutions London Ltd 2012 that held that the employer had not asked the employees to work during their lunch hour and did not require them to do so and therefore they were not entitled to payment. We recommend that it be made clear to employees that any additional hours worked must always be authorised in advance by a Manager before any claim can be made for overtime payments.

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