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NJ DCF Logo with reverse copy


New Jersey Department of Children and Families Policy Manual




DCF Wide

Effective Date:



Administrative Policies



Human Resources




Human Resources



Work Hours


I.          PURPOSE


To establish procedural guidelines for all Department of Children and Families (DCF) employees regarding the Department’s hours of operation.


II.         SCOPE


            This policy applies Department-wide.




            Fair Labor Standards Act 29 U.S.C. 201 et seq.

            N.J.A.C.4A:6-2.1 et seq.


IV.       POLICY


A.        Normal Business Hours for the Department of Children and Families are 8:00 am until 6:00 pm, Monday through Friday. Employees are expected to arrive at their work station and be prepared to work at the start of their established work day, and are expected to remain available at work until the end of their work day.


1.         These hours of operation do not apply to 24 hour functions such as the Residential Treatment Centers and the State Central Registry.




A.        Employee work times may begin and end at any interval between the Normal Business Hours (i.e., 8 am-4 pm, 8:30 am-4:30 pm, 9:00 am-5:00 pm, etc.) upon the approval of the employee’s supervisor, based on the employee’s workweek.


1.         Employee work hours in 24 hour units shall be determined by the employee’s supervisor in accordance with appropriate contractual obligations.


2.         An employee’s work hours should not be established outside of the Department’s Normal Business Hours unless there is a bona fide business need, with the exception of 24 hour units.


B.        Once established, and employee’s work hours shall be permanent

unless operational requirements, or exigent circumstances, warrant a change.  All changes must be approved, in advance, by the employee’s supervisor. 


            C.        Late arrival


                        1.         If an employee arrives at work after their established start time, the time shall be accumulated and once it reaches one hour, available, appropriate leave time (vacation, administrative leave, and sick leave) shall be reduced by an equivalent value, or if no appropriate leave is available, the employee shall be docked in pay.


                        2.         If an employee arrives habitually late for work, the supervisor shall discuss this with the employee in an attempt to determine, with the assistance of the Office of Human Resources, if there is a legitimate reason causing the employee to be late.


                                    a.         If there is a medical reason for the lateness, the supervisor shall not discuss the matter further with the employee but must refer the matter to the Office of Human Resources for an appropriate resolution.


                                    b.         If no legitimate cause is determined, the employee should be referred to the Office of Cooperative Labor Relations for appropriate corrective/disciplinary action in accordance with DCF POLICY: 011-2007, Table of Offenses and Penalties.


            D.        Adjustment to employee work hours


                        1.         Permanent adjustments to an employee’s work hours may be made under the following circumstances:


                                    a.         By management as a result of operational needs, or


                                   b.          Pursuant to a request by the employee, subject to approval by his or her supervisor based on operational needs.

                        2.         Occasional adjustment of an employee’s work hours due to a late arrival or other similar circumstance may be approved by the employee’s supervisor in advance, and only on rare occasions.


            E.        Lunch


                        1.         Employees who are covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) are non-exempt and are required to take a one (1) hour unpaid lunch. Non-exempt employees must be relieved of all work duties and are prohibited from conducting any work while on their one (1) hour unpaid lunch break.        


                                    Attachment 1 lists all active DCF titles and corresponding FLSA designations.


                        2.         The supervisor shall schedule the lunch periods of their staff to occur between the hours of 11:00 am and 2:00 pm. The supervisor shall schedule the lunch periods of their staff to ensure the work unit is staffed appropriately.


                        3.         Lunch periods may not be delayed until the end of the day to permit an early release from work, nor shall they be used to offset a late arrival for work.


                        4.         Employees may only skip their assigned lunch period, or a portion thereof, if a client or co-worker’s safety would be threatened by their absence, or under extraordinary circumstances with advance supervisory approval.


            F.         Breaks


                        1.         Employees may take a paid 15 minute break in the morning and a paid 15 minute break in the afternoon.


                        2.         The breaks shall be scheduled by supervisors to ensure the work unit is staffed appropriately.


                        3.         Breaks may not be moved or accumulated for the purpose of a longer break or to allow for an early release from work or a late arrival.



            G.        Obligations


                        1.         It is the responsibility of supervisors to ensure compliance with this policy.





_____________________                                     _________________________

                Date                                                                        Kimberly S. Ricketts  










1. Active Titles with Work Week Codes and FSLA Designations