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Employee Discipline: Texas

Employee Discipline requirements for other states

Federal law and guidance on this subject should be reviewed together with this section.

Authors: Shafeeqa W. Giarratani and Kimberly King, Norton Rose Fulbright


  • For purposes of wiretapping laws, Texas is a one-party consent state with respect to recording meetings, including those of a disciplinary nature. See Recording Meetings.
  • Texas employers should exercise caution when disciplining employees for possession of firearms or weapons on business premises. See Discipline Regarding Guns in the Workplace.
  • Texas law does not restrict an employer's ability to drug test employees. See Drug and Alcohol Testing.
  • A number of Texas cities have adopted smoke-free indoor workplace ordinances. See Smoke-Free Workplace Law.
  • Texas law prohibits retaliation against employees who engage in certain protected activities. Employers should exercise caution when disciplining employees who are members of protected classes. See Prohibited EEO Discrimination and RetaliationWhistleblower and Retaliation Protections.
  • Public employees enjoy certain whistleblower protections under Texas law. See Whistleblower and Retaliation Protections.
  • Texas law prohibits the discipline and termination of an employee in retaliation for his or her refusal to engage in certain business dealings or purchases. See Coercion of Employee Trade.
  • While poor attendance may be a valid reason to discipline employees, Texas employers may not discipline employees who are absent from work for certain protected activities. See Attendance.
  • The Texas Payday Law restricts an employer from withholding any part of an employee's wages. There are very limited exceptions to this rule. See Disciplinary Pay Cuts.
  • Management-level employees owe a fiduciary duty of good faith and loyalty to their employer. Accordingly, certain employees may be disciplined or terminated for breaching their fiduciary duties. See Employees' Duty of Loyalty.
  • A Texas employer may file claims against those, including current or former employees, who misappropriate the employer's trade secrets. See Trade Secrets Theft.
  • Employees subject to discipline may bring a defamation or intentional infliction of emotional distress claim, but employers have solid defenses to such claims. See Employer Liability Regarding Employee Discipline.
  • Localities including Austin and Euless have requirements pertaining to employee discipline. See Local Requirements.