Tip Sharing Law May Lead To Confusion And Backpay Lawsuits

New reports that hotel food and beverage workers have reached a settlement unpaid wage claim. 150 current and former food and beverage workers sued the Crowne Plaza Hotel for its failure to reimburse them for tips they earned.

Laws concerning tips and tip-sharing can be complex. Consulting with an experienced Atlanta wage and hour attorney is important if you have questions about whether you are receiving all the money you are entitled to or if you believe you have been unfairly denied all of your wages.

Often, questions arise concerning the wages paid to workers and many times, tipped employees fail to receive all the wages they are entitled to. While both state and federal law require that workers receive are entitled to minimum wage, where workers earn more $30 a month in tips, in some situations employers may use a “tip credit” against their minimum wage obligation. However, employers cannot use the “tip credit” to avoid paying minimum wage. Additionally tips are only the property of the employee and employers cannot use tips other than as part of a tip credit.

Further, tipped employees may agree to a tip sharing agreement. However, federal and state laws prohibit tip-sharing with employees who are not directly involved in service to customers. Tip-sharing is generally allowed among waitpersons, counter staff, bartenders and bus persons but not with workers who don’t regularly receive tips such as dishwashers, cooks, sales staff or others in management.

Problems occur when workers don’t receive minimum wage for any number of reasons, such as not receiving sufficient tips to make up the difference between the wage paid and minimum wage, or where employees contribute to a tip pool that is invalid. Also, tipped employees are entitled to overtime wages. Employers need to use care to ensure the overtime pay is calculated using the correct rate of pay.

Due to the complexities involving tipped employees, if you receive much of your income through tips, it is a good idea to consult with an experienced Georgia wage and hour attorney to ensure you are receiving all the wages you deserve.

If you have questions about your pay or believe you are not receiving what you deserve, contact the experienced Atlanta wage and hour lawyers at Buckley Bala Wilson Mew LLP for a confidential case evaluation.