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McDonald’s Breaks Class Action

Shine Lawyers has launched a class action on behalf of McDonald’s workers who were not given a paid 10 minute break when working a shift of four hours or more.

Update: Opt Out Deadline 19 February 2024 

An Opt Out Notice approved by the Federal Court of Australia was sent to potential group members in the McDonald’s Breaks Class Action in January 2024. The Notice advised group members of their right to opt out of the class action, which they could do by filling out an opt out form.  

The deadline for group members to opt out of the class action was 4:00pm on 19 February 2024. If you missed the deadline and would like to discuss the impact of this with a member of our team, please direct your enquiries to mcdonaldsclassaction@shine.com.au. 

What is the McDonald’s Breaks Class Action about? 

Under the McDonald’s Australia Enterprise Agreement 2013 (EBA) and the Fast Food Industry Award 2010 (Award), McDonald’s and its franchisees operating McDonald’s branded outlets across Australia (McDonald's workers), are required to provide McDonald’s workers a paid 10 minute break for shifts between four and nine hours, and two 10 minute paid breaks for shifts longer than 9 hours.

Shine Lawyers, with the support of Retail and Fast Food Workers Union (RAFFWU) has filed a class action on behalf of McDonald’s workers who were not given a paid 10 minute break when working a shift of four hours or more. The class action alleges McDonald’s operated a system of work which operated to deny McDonald's workers their right to paid breaks in breach of the EBA and the Award.

This class action follows a judgment delivered in the case of Retail and Fast Food Workers’ Union Incorporated v Tantex Holdings Pty Ltd on 31 August 2020. In that case, the Federal Court found that a McDonald’s franchisee misrepresented to its employees that they were entitled to a paid 10 minute break only when working shifts of more than four hours (rather than shifts or four hours or more), and also breached the EBA by failing to provide the applicant, a McDonald’s worker, paid breaks for shifts of four or more hours. The judgment makes it clear that in addition to paid rest breaks, McDonald’s workers are also entitled to drink water or use the toilet outside of their scheduled breaks.

Shine Lawyers is grateful to have the support of the RAFFWU in this class action.

Can I join the McDonald’s Breaks Class Action?

To be a part of this class action you must:

Be a current or former McDonald’s employee who has worked shifts of four hours or more:

  • in a McDonald’s corporate store between 7 December 2015 and 27 May 2022;

AND/OR

  • in a McDonald’s franchised store between 28 May 2016 and 27 May 2022;

AND

  • not have been given 10 minute breaks during one or more of these shifts;

AND

  • have not claimed in other Court proceedings, whether through an agent or representative or otherwise, the same or similar relief, compensation and remedies sought in this class action.

If you answered yes to the above, you may be entitled to compensation, and you are encouraged to register for the McDonald’s Breaks Class Action.

How to express your interest in the McDonald's Breaks Class Action

To express your interest in the McDonald’s Breaks Class Action on a confidential, no-obligation basis, please click the ‘Register Now’ button where you’ll receive further information about the Class Action, including:

  • How to participate; and

  • Updates about the progress of the class action.

Frequently Asked Questions

Will McDonald's find out if I have registered for the class action?

No. You have no obligation to tell McDonald’s that you have registered for this class action. We wish to assure you that any information shared with Shine Lawyers will remain strictly private and confidential.

What is a class action?

When Governments, large companies or institutions do the wrong thing and people are harmed or suffer loss as a result, an individual can have little to no means of bringing a legal claim.

Class actions are an important mechanism within Australia’s legal system that allow large groups of people to come together to pursue a claim collectively.

For a class action to take place, there are three criteria that need to be met:

  1. There must be 7 or more people that have claims against the same defendant; and

  2. The claims relate to the same or similar circumstances; and

  3. The claim must relate to at least one common issue of law or fact.

For more information about how class actions resolve, click here.

How long do class actions take to resolve?

It can take up to several years for a class action to resolve. The time taken from case commencement through to resolution and settlement administration depends on the particular case, and the nature of the claim.

For more information about class actions and how they work, click here.

Does it cost anything to join a class action?

Shine Lawyers is committed to ensuring that everyone, regardless of their background or financial situation, has access to justice. We run our class actions in a way that means you are not exposed to any costs or financial risk, so joining a class action will cost you nothing.

When a class action is successful, the legal fees and costs to run the class action are deducted from the settlement amount that is approved by the Court. If the class action is unsuccessful, we will ensure there are no out-of-pocket costs to you.

Will my contact details be kept private?

Yes, your contact details will remain confidential and we will seek your consent before disclosing any of your personal information (including before such disclosure is required by the Court).

Shine Lawyers will only use your personal information strictly for the purpose of the legal proceedings.

Meet the McDonald's Breaks Class Action team

Shine Lawyers’ McDonald's Breaks Class Action team includes some of the firm’s most experienced litigators, solicitors and support staff. You can learn more about the team running this class action by clicking on their profile below. 

Why Choose Shine Lawyers?

$1B

In successful settlements and judgments

We have secured more than $1 billion in class action settlements and judgments for our group members. 

200

years of collective experience

Our team includes the country’s most experienced class actions experts and litigators with the skill, industry insight and dedication to deliver the best possible outcomes for deserving Australians.

70+

dedicated class actions team members

We are proudly one of the largest class actions teams in the country.  Our senior practitioners are supported by a dedicated team devoted to the complex field of class actions.

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