Wage and Labor Laws in Texas | Current Texas Labor Laws


Minimum Wage

Texas’ current minimum wage is $7.25.

For more information on Texas’s minimum wage laws, visit our Texas Minimum Wage Laws page, which includes topics such as minimum wage, tip minimum wage, tip sharing and pooling, and subminimum wages.

Related topic covered on other pages include:


Overtime

Texas labor laws do not have laws governing the payment of overtime. Federal overtime laws apply. Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, federal overtime laws state that employees must receive overtime pay if they work more than 40 hours in one workweek. In addition, compensation for overtime hours must not be any less than 1.5 times their regular pay rate.

See FLSA: Overtime for more information regarding overtime requirements.


Prevailing Wages

Under certain circumstances, employers in Texas may be required to pay residents wage rates established by the federal or state prevailing wage rates and rules. The prevailing wage rates may be different from the state’s standard minimum wage rates.

Employees may be eligible for prevailing wages if they work on federal or state government or government-funded construction projects or perform certain federal or state government services. See the Texas Prevailing Wages, Davis-Bacon and Related Acts, McNamara-O’Hara Service Contract Act (SCA), and Walsh-Healey Public Contracts Act (PCA) for more information about prevailing wages.


Meals and Breaks

Texas labor laws do not have any laws requiring an employer to provide a meal period or breaks to employees, thus the federal rule applies. TX Labor Law FAQs. The federal rule does not require an employer to provide either a meal (lunch) period or breaks.

However, if an employer chooses to do so, breaks, usually of the type lasting less than twenty (20) minutes, must be paid. Meal or lunch periods (usually thirty (30) minutes or more) do not need to be paid, so long as the employee is free to do as they wish during the meal or lunch period. DOL: Breaks and Meal Periods.


Nursing Mother Breaks

Texas labor laws do not require employers to provide nursing mothers with breaks to express breast milk. However, the federal Fair Labor Standards Act requires certain employees to provide nonexempt nursing mothers for one (1) year following a child’s birth with reasonable rest breaks to express milk and private spaces, other than a bathroom, to express breast milk.


Vacation Leave

There are currently no federal or state laws in Texas that require private-sector employers to provide their employees with unpaid or paid leave for vacation. However, if the employment contract states that there will be paid or unpaid vacation time, this contract must be adhered to. Unless expressly stated otherwise, employers are not required to pay accrued vacation leave at the date of the final paycheck.

Information about Texas vacation leave laws may now be found on our Texas Leave Laws page.


Sick Leave

There are no laws or regulations in Texas that require employers to provide their employees with unpaid or paid leave. However, this only applies to private-sector employers. On the other hand, public sector employers must provide eight hours of sick leave per month for all full-time employees.

Information about Texas sick leave laws may now be found on our Texas Leave Laws page.


Holiday Leave

There are no state or federal laws in Texas that require employers to observe any holidays. Employers are also not required to provide employees with holiday pay. However, if employers provide a day off for a holiday, exempt employees must be paid their full weekly salary if they have worked any hours during the holiday.

Unless a religious holiday causes undue hardship to the business, companies with 15 employees or more must grant employees time off to observe the holiday.

Information about Texas holiday leave laws may now be found on our Texas Leave Laws page.


Jury Duty Leave

Texas law requires all employers to provide leave to their permanent employees summoned for jury duty or grand jury duty. Employers may not threaten to discharge, intimidate, or coerce employees who take time off for jury duty. 

Employees who feel intimidated, coerced, or threatened with discharge may take civil action against their employer. In Texas, no federal or state law prevents an employer from requiring an employee to use paid leave or vacation pay for jury duty

Information about Texas jury duty leave laws may now be found on our Texas Leave Laws page.


Voting Leave

Employees in Texas are given paid time off for voting on election days during official voting hours. If an employee has not voted early in the morning, and unless the employee has access to at least two consecutive hours to vote outside regular working hours, the employee must be provided paid time off for voting. 

For instance, if an employee is scheduled to work until 6 p.m., but the polls close at 7 p.m., the worker is entitled to leave work at 5 p.m. and will receive one hour of paid leave. In addition, employers may suggest that workers vote early in the morning to avoid hardships in the business, although this is not stated by law.

Information about Texas voting leave laws may now be found on our Texas Leave Laws page.


Severance Pay

Texas labor laws do not require employers to provide employees with severance pay. TX Labor Law FAQs. If an employer chooses to provide severance benefits, it must comply with the terms of its established policy or employment contract.


Unemployment

Under certain circumstances, Texas residents may be eligible for unemployment benefits while they search for another job. You are required to certify that you are unemployed on a weekly basis to receive these benefits.

Workers are eligible for unemployment benefits based on job separation. To qualify for unemployment insurance, a person must be either working reduced hours through no fault of their own or completely unemployed. 

This may include reducing wages or hours not related to misconduct, being laid off, being fired for reasons other than misconduct, or quitting the job with good cause. After eight weeks of unemployment, you must be willing to accept a suitable replacement job that pays at least 75% of your previous wage. 

If you do not apply for suitable work, accept work, or return to regular employment, you may be disqualified from receiving unemployment benefits. Unemployment benefits in Texas are also based on having worked a certain number of hours within a certain period.

See Texas State Unemployment Benefits.


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We hope you find our newsletters help you better navigate employment and labor law issues.