Governmental laws have significant impact on the way we live by helping or hindering people in different ways.
This page is meant to highlight relevant laws, certain key effects they create, and suggest actions in light of the laws.
Here are some laws that may be helpful to you:
Policy Name: Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA)
The FMLA entitles eligible employees of covered employers to take unpaid, job-protected leave (you cannot be fired or replaced) for specified family and medical reasons with continuation of group health insurance coverage under the same terms and conditions as if the employee had not taken leave.
1) Twelve workweeks of leave in a 12-month period for:
a) a child’s birth;
b) care of newborn child within 1 year of birth;
c) adoption or foster care within one year of placement;
d) employee’s spouse/child/parent with serious health condition;
e) serious health condition hindering/disabling full performance of job functions;
f) qualifying exigency regarding employee’s spouse, son, daughter, parent covered military member on “covered active duty”.
2) Twenty-six workweeks of leave during a single 12-month period:
a) covered service member with serious injury/illness if the eligible employee is the service member’s spouse, son, daughter, parent, or next of kin (military caregiver leave).
- You’re eligible for FMLA if your employer is: government, public school, or private business with over 50 employees AND you have worked 1250 hours for them in the last 12 months.
People don’t have to worry about losing their job while they tend to family/themselves.
Pregnant mothers cannot be fired for taking time off they need to deliver & recover.
You won’t be paid for your time off (unless you use vacation time); it just means you’ll still have a job when you’re ready to return to work.
- Get familiar with FMLA requirements using this government poster
- Check with your employer’s human resources policies or personnel to see if they have a specific form to fill out the claim FMLA. You can use this example form if they don’t have one. https://dhr.idaho.gov/wp-content/uploads/FMLA-LEAVE-REQUEST-FORM_Interactive.pdf
- Discuss your medical situation with doctor (some take care of FMLA application for you)
- Provide the required 30-days notice to your employer to prepare for taking time off.
Policy Name: Panhandling: Texas Transportation Code 552.007
The cities of Bellmead and Lacy-Lakeview do not have an ordinance prohibiting panhandling, which is a source of income for many homeless individuals. However, law enforcement officials employ Texas Transportation Code 552.007 to address issues. Code 552.007 dictates that a person my not stand in a roadway to solicit contributions. Subsection (a) of the code defines “roadway” as the roadbed, shoulder, median, curb, safety zone, sidewalk, and utility easement (space on the side of the road where the power poles are).
- A person cannot legally panhandle from a roadway because they can be arrested.
- It is possible to legally panhandle from a parking lot or private property. However, be aware that a store owner or property owner has the right to ask someone to stop panhandling, leave the property, and charge someone with trespassing if they do not comply. The owners could call the police and file a complaint which could result in an arrest.
- The police department give several warnings before a person is arrested, unless the owner wants to charge someone with trespassing after the refuse to leave the premises.
- Find a safe and noninvasive place to panhandle
- Find other ways for quick, short-term income such as donating plasma, doing manual labor, or selling possessions/goods.
Policy Name: Texas Labor Code sec 207.045 (d) Voluntarily Leaving Work
The Social Security Act of 1935 among many things, this law provides for unemployment benefits. The state is left to distribute the funds provided to the state for unemployment benefits. This specific provision of the Texas Labor Code says a person who quits their job can also qualify for unemployment benefits under certain situations. If someone quits for reasons related to unsafe work conditions, changes in hiring agreement, or not getting paid, they may be eligible for unemployment benefits. Other qualifying reasons to receive unemployment benefits include: caring for a child with medical illness, personal medical issues, caring for a spouse with terminal illness, a documented sexual assault, family violence, and stalking.
What this means:
- Despite what people say, you are not automatically disqualified from unemployment if you quit your job.
- You could qualify to receive an unemployment check if you quit for the reasons above.
- You can receive money to help cover expenses while you search for another job.
- This is the first step. There are some other qualifications you need in order to receive unemployment.
- Check your eligibility for unemployment and benefit amounts at https://www.twc.texas.gov/jobseekers/eligibility-benefit-amounts
- Gather documents needed to apply using the checklist at https://www.twc.texas.gov/jobseekers/unemployment-benefits-services#applyForBenefits
- Submit your unemployment application at https://apps.twc.state.tx.us/UBS/changeLocale.do?language=en&country=US&page=/security/logon.do