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Mandatory Lunch in Texas

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  • Mandatory Lunch in Texas

    I review the page that was suggested for "Minimum Length of Meal..." however did not see Texas listed as a state that requires lunch breaks. I work for a non-profit organization as a non-exempt employee. I enjoy working through lunch whether or not I end up working 8 or more hours a day in the beginning of the week as my job duties seem to be more demanding during that time. I end up having to take hours off toward the end of the week in order to not go over 40 hours. However, another non-exempt employee likes to work through lunch in order to leave early everyday. Because of his schedule and poor performance our Exec has mandated that all non-exempts must take 1 hour off for lunch. He says (to be fair to all) the reason for this is because the company could be sued if they did not enforce lunch breaks. Is this true?

  • #2
    Texas law does not require lunch breaks. However, the company has the right to require them whether the law does or not. It is also true, though it may be a bit of a stretch, that having chosen to require them, the company COULD be sued IF they were not enforced right down the line and some employee felt that they were being discriminated against because of an inequal enforcement.

    However, it doesn't matter whether it is true or not. The employer, not the employee, makes the rules as to what hours are worked and not worked. If the employer says you take a lunch break, you take a lunch break, and they do not have to defend or justify the decision.
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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