Progressive Discipline Policy Considerations for Texas Employers–Texas Employment Law

Discipline Progressive disciplinary systems usually include a range of disciplinary measures, including:

• oral and written warnings

• probation

• suspension with or without pay

• disciplinary pay cuts (it is best to make this a token amount of one or two per cent – do not impose such a cut without a prior written warning – give notice of the cut in writing in order to reduce risk of a wage claim)

• demotion or reassignment • final warning • discharge Documentation is very important for use in justifying a personnel action and defending against claims and lawsuits

• The employee should get a copy, and a copy should go into the personnel file.

• Have the employee or a witness sign and date the warning, and have a company representative sign and date it as well. • The warning should clearly let the employee know what the next step will be if the problem continues.

• The employer should follow its own policy and prior warnings as closely as possible, unless there is a compelling reason not to do so; do not issue warnings until the company is ready to take action and mean it; warnings that are not enforced are even worse than completely ignoring a problem.

• Do not issue a “final warning” until and unless the company is ready to terminate the employee upon the very next occurrence of the problem that caused the warning to be issued


Williams, McClure & Parmelee is dedicated to high quality legal representation of businesses and insurance companies in a variety of matters. We are experienced Texas civil litigation attorneys based in Fort Worth who know Texas courts and Texas law. For more information, please contact the law firm at 817-335-8800. The firm’s new office location is 5601 Bridge Street, Suite 300, Fort Worth, Texas 76112.

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