The majority of states do not require companies to provide workers with paid breaks or unpaid meal periods. Texas is one of the majority states and does not require employees to provide either benefit to employees. Federal laws also do not require companies to provide these benefits.
Federal Laws Regarding Lunches and Breaks
The U.S. Department of Labor's website explains that no federal statute or regulation requires private sector employers to provide breaks or lunch periods to workers. Workers must rely upon state laws and regulations if they are to enjoy any right to such benefits.
Texas Law Regarding Breaks
Texas does not require employers to provide short rest breaks to workers. Texas is not one of the eight states listed by the U.S. Department of Labor as requiring such breaks. The Texas Workforce Commission does not include breaks under the "Employee Rights and Laws" section of its website.
Texas Law Regarding Lunches
Texas does not mandate that employers provide workers with lunch periods. As of 2010, Texas is not one of the 19 states listed by the U.S. Department of Labor as requiring unpaid meal periods. Also, the Texas Workforce Commission does not list lunch periods under the "Employee Rights and Laws" section of its website.
Texas is not one of the 35 states requiring that minor employees receive a lunch period. The U.S. Department of Labor lists states providing that benefit to minor workers, and Texas is not included on the list as of 2010. The Texas Child Labor Law does not require this benefit either.
Employers May Provide Breaks and Lunches
Employers may provide breaks and lunches to Texas employees. If breaks are provided, the Federal Code of Regulations at 29 C.F.R. 785.18 treats the break time as working time. Employees must be paid for the breaks. However, 29 C.F.R. 785.19 treats lunch periods of 30 minutes or greater differently. Employers need not pay employees for their lunch time.