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Restaurant servers allege wage and hour law violations

Florida workers in industries in which tips form a substantial part of their incomes have to keep a close eye on the manner in which their wages are calculated. Violations of the wage and hour law are not that uncommon -- especially in the restaurant industry. A collection action lawsuit was recently filed against an establishment in another state, alleging misappropriation of tips and the failure to pay overtime.

The lawsuit alleges Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) violations committed by the company. The plaintiffs claim that, while the minimum wage level for servers is $7.25 per hour, the company pays its servers only $2.13 per hour. It then appropriates percentages of the servers' tips to make up the difference and to subsidize the salaries of managers. Further allegations state that 10 percent of tips on credit card transactions to servers must go to managers, and another 25 percent is passed on to the assistants of the servers. Cash tips are allegedly also distributed illegally and irresponsibly.

The plaintiffs further allege that, even after working over 40 hours per week on many occasions, the business failed to pay overtime. Tipped workers who were ordered to perform duties in non-tip circumstances were allegedly not paid minimum wages for those hours. The plaintiffs in this case seek recovery of all lost wages and tips, along with all damages deemed appropriate under the FLSA, for themselves and any future claims.

There is no reason for Florida workers to endure wage and hour law violations without taking action. An experienced labor law attorney can explain their rights under the Fair Labor Standards Act and also the manners in which such situations can be remedied. Successful legal action, properly navigated by a lawyer, can result in reinstatement of cases that had been dismissed and in the court ordering full payment of all misappropriated funds and unpaid overtime.

Source:, "Server accuses restaurant of tip appropriation, FLSA violations", Hoang Tran, April 4, 2016

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