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How many hours do I have to work to be considered a full-time employee?

Minnesota law does not define employees as full or part time, rather Minnesota Rules 5200.0170 defines a workweek. A workweek is a fixed and regularly recurring period of 168 hours, seven consecutive 24-hour periods.

For the purpose of overtime calculation, Minnesota Statutes 177.25 states hours worked in excess of 48 hours in a workweek must be paid at one-and-one-half times the regular rate of pay.

If you have questions related to eligibility for benefits as a full-time or part-time employee, contact the U.S. Department of Labor's Pension and Benefits office at 816-285-1800 (this is not a toll-free phone number).

Can my employer require me to work overtime and fire me if I refuse to work overtime?

The employer has the authority to establish the work schedule and determine the hours to be worked. There are no limits on the overtime hours the employer can schedule. Employees who refuse to work the scheduled hours may be terminated. Advance notice by an employer of the change in hours is not required.

Doesn't my employer have to give me a break?

The state law requires employers to provide restroom time and sufficient time to eat a meal. If the break is less than 20 minutes in duration, it must be counted as hours worked. Time to use the nearest restroom must be provided within each four consecutive hours of work. Meal time applies to employees who work eight or more consecutive hours (see Minnesota Statutes 177.253, 177.254 and Minnesota Rules 5200.0120).

Do nursing mothers get break time?

An employee must be provided break time to express milk for their child. An employer cannot reduce an employee’s compensation for time taken to express milk. While breaks must, where possible, run concurrently with breaks already provided, including existing unpaid breaks, employers can’t reduce an employee's pay or require an employee to make up time used to express milk. The employer must also make reasonable efforts to provide a private area that is not a bathroom and has an electrical outlet for a nursing employee to express milk (see Minnesota Statutes 181.939).

Do I get time off work for school visits?

Every employee is entitled to take up to 16 hours unpaid leave a year for each child to attend their children's school conferences, classroom activities, child care or other early childhood program. Employees may use vacation time (see Minnesota Statutes 181.9412).

Should I keep track of the hours I work?

Yes, the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry encourages workers to keep track of the hours they work, including start time and end time and any breaks taken. Workers can keep track of these hours on paper or via a mobile app available on the App Store or Google Play.

For more information

Contact us at, 651-284-5075 or 800-342-5354