What You Need to Know About Illinois’ One Day Rest in Seven Act

Beth Dean 01.26.23
Nextep Blog - One Day Rest in Seven Act

Rest Up! For Illinois Workers, ODRISA is Now Law

Beginning in 2023, The One Day Rest In Seven Act (ODRISA) allows Illinois employees the right to take one day off in seven, plus breaks during a long workday. 

Here’s a breakdown of the basics:

  • Employees must get a minimum of 24 hours of rest every seven days.
  • Employers may obtain a permit from the Illinois Department of Labor that allows employees to voluntarily work on the seventh day, as long as the employee earns the overtime rate if applicable.
  • Employees get a meal period of at least 20 minutes for every 7.5-hour shift, beginning no later than 5 hours after the start of the shift.
  • Employees get an additional 20-minute meal period if working a 12-hour shift or longer.
  • Reasonable restroom breaks, in addition to the meal break, must be provided.
  • Employers must display an updated poster, available here or here for free download. 

ODRISA requires Illinois employers to provide their employees one day of rest in seven. This means that an employee is entitled to at least one day off in any consecutive seven-day period.

This law is essential to workers because it ensures they have at least one day of rest per week, which can help improve their physical and mental well-being. Additionally, the law helps to prevent burnout and fatigue, which can negatively impact an employee’s performance and productivity. It also provides time for family, religious, and personal pursuits. Overall, the One Day Rest In Seven Act helps promote a better work-life balance for workers, which can positively impact productivity and their overall quality of life.

This new law may leave some questions for Illinois employers, so let’s dive in further.

Frequent ODRISA questions and answers

Are restroom breaks taken concurrently with the 20-minute meal breaks? 

No. Restroom breaks are in addition to meal breaks. 

What if my employee works through their lunch break? 

Employee pay and lunch breaks are another tricky topic in businesses throughout America, not just in Illinois. Under ODRISA, you must provide the mandated meal breaks. If an employee voluntarily works during lunch or takes fewer than the allotted 20 minutes, they must be paid for that time worked. 

Check out our blog for more on employee pay, lunch breaks, or errands.

Why is rest so important?

Burnout and fatigue can negatively impact an employee’s performance by decreasing productivity, increasing the likelihood of mistakes and absenteeism, making the employee less motivated and less engaged with their work and colleagues.

Several court cases have also involved employees claiming that they were negatively impacted by working excessive hours and not getting enough rest. 

For one on one guidance on this and other laws, contact your HR Business Partner at Nextep!


Did you know Illinois has another compliance update for January 2023? We’ve got you covered! Check out our post on the Family Bereavement Leave Act (FBLA).

Read up on FBLA

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