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Texas State Holidays 2024: Employer’s Guide

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8 min read
texas state holidays 2024

If you are a small business owner or HR professional in the Lone Star State, then it’s vital that you keep up to speed with all Texas state holidays 2024. Why? Firstly, this information helps you effectively plan work schedules, manage staffing needs, make informed decisions regarding paid time off, and maintain productivity levels. Understanding the specific requirements and expectations surrounding holidays also ensures that you maintain a fair and legally compliant work environment.

In this comprehensive guide, we will share the Texas state calendar for 2024 and explore how private and state employers handle these holidays. We will also clarify what your obligations are in terms of paid time off. Additionally, we will delve into Texas holiday and leave laws so that you can build a compliant and productive organization.

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Texas state holidays 2024

Let’s start today’s guide by exploring the list of Texas holidays 2024.

Federal holidays 2024 in Texas:

  • New Year’s Day (Monday, January 1, 2024)
  • Martin Luther King Day (Monday, January 15, 2024)
  • Washington’s Birthday or President’s Day (Monday, February 19, 2024)
  • Memorial Day (Monday, May 27, 2024)
  • Emancipation Day in Texas/Juneteenth (Wednesday, June 19, 2024)
  • Independence Day (Thursday, July 4,2024)
  • Labor Day (Monday, September 2, 2024)
  • Veterans’ Day (Monday, November 11, 2024)
  • Thanksgiving Day (Thursday, November 28, 2024)
  • Christmas Day (Wednesday, December 25, 2024)

Unlike other states such as California, Florida, or New York, Texas has a unique set of state holidays that hold significance for its residents.

Texas state holidays 2024:

  • Confederate Memorial Day (January 19) (Also known as Confederate Heroes Day)
  • Texas Independence Day (March 2)
  • San Jacinto Day (April 21)
  • Lyndon Baines Johnson Day (August 27)
  • The Day after Thanksgiving Day
  • Christmas Eve (December 24)
  • The Day after Christmas Day (December 26)

Texas does not recognize Columbus Day (Monday, October 14, 2024) as a paid state holiday, but it is still widely observed across the state.

While the above state of Texas holiday schedule is widely recognized and celebrated, private employers in Texas are not legally obligated to observe these holidays or provide paid time off. The decision to grant time off or provide holiday pay to private employees is at the discretion of the employer and may vary from one company to another. Different rules apply to state and government employees, as we will see below.

Houston holidays and Dallas County holidays 2024

Some of these Texas state holidays 2024 are celebrated more prominently in certain parts of Texas. For example, Juneteenth, which commemorates the end of slavery in the United States, is particularly popular in Houston and Dallas County. This is because both areas have deep historical ties to the event. As a result, they often host events, such as parades, festivals, cultural performances, and educational programs, to commemorate the occasion.

Texas Independence Day is also a significant day of celebration in both Houston and Dallas County. The same applies to Cesar Chavez Day, which many businesses observe due to the high population of African American and Hispanic communities in Houston and Dallas County.

2024 federal holidays

State of Texas holiday and leave laws

Now that we’ve explored the state holiday schedule for fiscal year 2024, let’s take a look at some of the general holiday and leave laws in the state that you need to be aware of when you create your employee leave policies. This might include your policies for personal time off, parental leave, floating holidays, and VTO.

Vacation leave

There are no state laws in Texas that require employers to provide paid vacation leave to their employees. However, many employers in Texas choose to offer paid vacation leave as part of their employee compensation packages.

There are also no state laws in Texas that regulate how vacation leave is accrued. This means that employers are free to set their own vacation payout and PTO carry over policies. For example, some employers may pay out unused vacation leave when an employee terminates their employment, while others may not.

Family and medical leave

Generally speaking, Texas law does not require employers to provide employees with sick leave benefits, either paid or unpaid. However, certain employees are entitled to family and medical leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).

Specifically, the FMLA entitles eligible employees of covered employers (those who employ 50 or more employees) to take up to 12 weeks of unpaid, job-protected leave for:

  • The birth and care of the employee’s child, or placement for adoption or foster care of a child with the employee.
  • Care of an immediate family member (spouse, child, parent) who has a serious health condition.
  • Care of the employee’s own serious health condition.
  • If the employee’s spouse, son, daughter, or parent is a covered military member on “covered active duty”.

As well as:

  • Twenty-six work weeks of leave during a single 12-month period to care for a covered servicemember with a serious injury or illness if the eligible employee is the servicemember’s spouse, son, daughter, parent, or next of kin (military caregiver leave).

For an employee to be eligible for FMLA, they must:

  • Have worked for the employer for at least 12 months.
  • Have worked at least 1,250 hours during the 12 months immediately before the date FMLA leave begins.

Military leave

Texas law requires employers to allow employees to take time off from work to serve in the military. Employers must pay employees their regular wages for the time they spend serving in the military.

The length of military leave depends on the type of military service. For example, employees who are called to active duty are entitled to up to 52 weeks of paid military leave per year. Employees who are called to inactive duty training are entitled to up to 15 days of paid military leave per year.

Employees who are called to military service are also entitled to certain benefits under the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA). These benefits include the right to be reemployed in their former job after returning from military service, and the right to be reinstated to their former seniority, benefits, and pay.

Jury duty leave

Texas law requires employers to allow employees to take time off from work to serve on jury duty.

The amount of jury duty leave that you must provide will depend on the length of the jury duty assignment. For example, if an employee is summoned for a short-term jury duty assignment, typically lasting a few days or a week, the employer must provide leave and pay the employee’s regular wages for that period. However, if the jury duty assignment extends for a longer duration, such as several weeks or months, the employer may be able to require the employee to use their accrued paid leave or take unpaid leave.

Finally, employees who are called for jury duty are also entitled to certain benefits under the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure. Aside from the right to be excused from work, these benefits include the right to be reinstated to their former job after serving on jury duty, and the right to be reinstated to their former seniority, benefits, and pay.

Voting leave

According to the Texas Election Code, employees are allowed up to two hours of time off, without deduction from pay or leave time accrued, to vote in each national, state, or local election.

This means that employees can take up to two hours off from work to vote, without having to use their paid or accrued leave time. You cannot deduct this time off from the employee’s pay. However, Texas law does not require employers to allow employees to vote during their scheduled working hours. This means that if the polls are open for three or more hours before or after the employee’s scheduled working hours, then you do not have to offer them time off to vote.

This law applies to all employers in Texas, regardless of their size.

Read more on the most important employment laws in Texas to ensure compliance.

What holidays do Texas state employees get off?

The holidays that Texas state employees get off can vary from one agency or department to another. However, the Texas Government Code specifies a standard list of holidays that state employers commonly observe.

Specifically, government and state employers must offer a paid day off on the following state holidays 2024 in Texas:

  • Confederate Heroes Day
  • Texas Independence Day
  • San Jacinto Day
  • Emancipation Day
  • Good Friday

In addition, government and state employers must also offer a paid day off on the following federal holidays:

  • New Year’s Day
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • Presidents Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Christmas Day

Cesar Chavez Day is an optional holiday for Texas state employees. State employers do not have to pay employees who choose to observe Cesar Chavez Day, but they must allow them to take the day off without using any of their accrued leave. In addition, state employees can take Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashanah in lieu of any of the above state holidays.

Why do state employees get extra state holidays?

The rationale behind providing additional state holidays to government and public sector employees is to acknowledge and commemorate significant events, historical milestones, or cultural celebrations that hold particular importance to the state or local community. These additional holidays reflect the diverse heritage, traditions, and values of the people of Texas.

Moreover, government and public sector employees often provide essential services and play crucial roles in serving the public interest. Granting them additional holidays allows for well-deserved rest and recognition of their contributions to the community.

Are paid holidays mandatory in Texas?

As we saw above, there are no specific laws in the state of Texas that relate to paid leave for private-sector employees. Despite this fact, many private employers choose to offer these benefits as part of their employee compensation packages. Some employers may offer a set number of days of paid leave for each type of leave, while other employers may offer unlimited PTO or a flexible time off policy.

Common paid leave benefits offered to private sector employees include:

  • State holidays: Many employers in Texas offer their employees paid time off for certain holidays, such as New Year’s Day, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Presidents’ Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day.
  • Sick leave: Some employers in Texas offer their employees paid sick leave, which allows employees to take time off from work for certain reasons, such as illness, doctor’s appointments, or to care for a sick family member.
  • Vacation leave: Many employers in Texas offer their employees paid vacation leave, which allows employees to take time off from work for non-work-related reasons, such as to travel or to spend time with family.

What about state employees?

If you are a government or state employer in Texas, you must pay your employees for certain holidays.

This includes:

  • New Year’s Day
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day
  • Presidents’ Day
  • Memorial Day
  • Juneteenth
  • Independence Day
  • Labor Day
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • Christmas Day

You might also choose to offer a paid day off for the Friday after Thanksgiving.

The number of paid holidays that state employees in Texas receive each year might also vary depending on their job classification. For example, exempt state employees are typically entitled to more paid holidays than non-exempt state employees.

Moreover, if you require eligible state employees to work on national or state holidays, you must offer them compensatory time off within the following 12 months. In addition, if these employees work schedules other than Monday through Friday, you must also offer compensatory time off. This is calculated as eight hours of holiday leave multiplied by the number of national and state holidays in a fiscal year.

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Facilitate PTO and employee time tracking year-round

Managing paid time off (PTO) and employee time tracking can be a complex task for employers, especially when it comes to navigating the specific holidays observed in Texas. To streamline this process and ensure the seamless management of PTO, employers can turn to Factorial’s comprehensive HR software.

Factorial’s software offers a range of features specifically designed to simplify PTO management and employee time tracking for all Texas state holidays 2024 and beyond. With Factorial, employers can effortlessly handle the following:

  • Holiday calendar. Factorial provides an easily accessible holiday calendar that includes all Texas state holidays 2024. This helps you stay informed about upcoming holidays so that you can plan accordingly.
  • PTO requests and approvals. Employees can conveniently request PTO for Texas state holidays 2024 through the software’s leave management system. Employers can also approve or deny all types of time off requests through the system, maintaining a transparent and streamlined process.
  • Time tracking. Factorial’s time tracking feature enables accurate recording of employee work hours, ensuring compliance with labor laws, overtime tracking, and proper compensation for employees working on holidays.
  • PTO accrual and balances. The software automatically calculates and updates PTO accruals and balances, making it easier for employers to keep track of employee leave entitlements and ensure accurate compensation.
  • Reporting and analytics. Employers can access comprehensive reports and analytics on PTO usage, employee attendance, and holiday trends, allowing for data-driven decision-making and resource planning.

Factorial’s user-friendly interface and powerful features make PTO and employee time tracking a breeze for employers in Texas. By using this software, employers can effectively manage all Texas state holidays 2024, ensure labor law compliance, and foster a positive work-life balance for their employees.

Did you like this article? Benjamin McBrayer has been a Content Writer for 5 years. He specializes in HR strategy and workplace trends. Check out Factorial's blog for more of his posts on time management in the office, productivity, and HR news.

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