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What is the Fair Labor Standards Act?

The FLSA is a federal law that establishes minimum wage rights for employees. FLSA may be supplemented by state law but the federal protects cannot be reduced by state law. Texas has enacted the Texas Payday Law, which supplements FLSA in a minor number of ways. FLSA protects the right to minimum wage for most employees, overtime pay, equal pay between men and women and limits child labor. FLSA is an important law to protect the payment of wages for employees. Texas beliefs about the FLSA are not always correct There are many inaccurate beliefs about what FLSA requires. I frequently receive phone...

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How can I become emancipated in Texas?

Emancipation is the dream of many teenagers; the freedom from the controls of parents is alluring. The Texas Family Code permits emancipation in limited circumstances. It is important to understand, if you are a minor seeking emancipation, the risks of that decision. I’ll discuss the permitted reasons for emancipation, the process involved and the risks minors take upon emancipation. If you are serious about emancipation in Dallas or Fort Worth then you should speak with a divorce attorney. The Effect of Emancipation in Texas Emancipation, in Texas, has several effects on the minor. The minor obtains the power to make and bind...

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What is an independent contractor in Texas? Dallas unpaid wages attorney explains

Under Texas law and federal law, an independent contractor is a person that performs services for another entity under some agreement, in exchange for compensation, free from the “control” of the entity paying for the services. An independent contractor is typically thought of in contrast to an employee or as self-employed. This is mostly an accurate understanding; although an independent contractor can become an employee temporarily or even permanently based upon the conditions during services performed. What is an independent contractor under Texas employment law? Normally an independent contractor freely contracts to provide services with another party. The independent contractor works under his...

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Can my employer use what I say on facebook, twitter, linkedin, or other social media websites against me?

The laws around social media, especially in the employment context, are still evolving to meet the technological and social implications of social media in the workplace. Before delving into particulars, let me say that I think everybody needs to carefully consider what they post on social media websites because the information you put out there is stored for a very long time and can be used in criminal investigations, lawsuits and family matters such as divorces or child custody battles. While public employees have some different employment rights, due to their employment relationship with the government, private employees find themselves...

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How does an ESOP work? How does it work with a 401k plan?

An ESOP is an Employee Stock Ownership Plan. It is an ERISA-governed employee benefit plan that allows the employee to purchase shares of the employer’s stock on a tax deferred-basis. (You don’t pay taxes today but you will pay taxes when you take your money out of the plan.) ESOPs were common before the rise of 401k plans in the 1980s. Today it is common for employers to offer company stock in their 401k plans. The company stock in the 401k plan is often an ESOP within the 401k in a structure sometimes called KSOP. (For more information about KSOP plans...

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If my spouse has a divorce attorney do I need one?

You probably need your own divorce attorney if your spouse has already retained his or her own divorce attorney. Although divorces in the Dallas/Fort Worth area happen all the time with one or even no lawyers involved, that does not mean it is necessarily in your best interest to go without. If your spouse has retained counsel, he or she intends to protect his or her rights. Can you hire one Bedford or Fort Worth divorce attorney? Sometimes both spouses can hire a single divorce attorney to represent in order to facilitate filing the right paperwork for the divorce, custody and child...

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Can my employer prohibit workplace relationships in Dallas or Fort Worth? Dallas sexual harassment lawyer answers

Sure. Employers in Fort Worth and Dallas generally can prohibit amorous and sexual relationships between coworkers. It is extremely common for employers to prohibit workplace relationships in some form or another. Most companies establish these policies to deter sexual harassment, maintain professionalism and prevent unfair treatment (either favorable or unfavorable). These policies are also enforced to various degrees. A prohibition against superior-subordinate relationships is typically the most stringently enforced. It is most likely to produce unfair treatment against the subordinate in the relationship. This is a common issue in employment. Fort Worth and Dallas employer workplace relationship policies Employers tend to build these anti-relationship policies...

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Will suing my employer hurt my job in Fort Worth? Fort Worth retaliation lawyer addresses this question

This is among the concerns I hear as a Fort Worth employment attorney from people about employment law issues. It is a legitimate concern. There is a lot of public discussion over the negative impact taking legal action against an employer can have on your job, if you still work for the company you are challenging, and future jobs. In many ways taking legal action against your employer will have a negative impact on your future with that company. It puts promotions and raises on the line. When you leave the company people may be unwilling to provide a positive...

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What is a QDRO in a Texas divorce? Fort Worth divorce attorney explains

QDRO stands for Qualified Domestic Relations Order. There are two components to a QDRO. One is the domestic relations order and the second is the qualification. A domestic relations order is an order issued by a state judge under the state’s domestic relations law. These orders are typically part of the property settlement following a divorce. It assigns a property interest belonging to one person to an alternate payee. The two most common alternate payees are former spouses and children, who receive the order for child support. QDROs are complex orders. If you need a QDRO in your divorce you should consider...

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Does Texas require employers to give employees breaks or lunches?

Texas labor and employment law has no general rule requiring breaks or lunches no matter how long you work. Because Texas lacks state specific laws on break and lunch periods, it defaults to federal law. Federal law also generally does not require breaks or a lunch period. An employee in Texas must receive a break or lunch if there is an employment contract specifically stating such requirements. Unless you are a union employee or have a contract then you are largely at the mercy of your employer’s discretion. Under the Affordable Healthcare Act, breastfeeding mothers must be given reasonable (but unpaid) break time for breastfeeding...

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