Unpaid wage lawyers at Leeds Brown Law, P.C., representing employees in New York City, Long Island and the greater metropolitan area, have decades of experience advocating for the rights of restaurant workers. Waiters, waitresses, bartenders, and others employed by the food service and hospitality industries have long been in good hands with our firm. There are thousands of restaurant in our practice area, and we know how hard it can be when you rely on unpredictable tips to supplement your small hourly wage. It is even more challenging when you work for an employer who violates the law, paying you less than the amount to which you are entitled, effectively stealing your wages.
Rules that govern how to pay workers who regularly receive tips are complicated and confusing. There are provisions in state and federal legislation that determine your hourly wage, overtime eligibility and calculations, and receipt of tips but the laws as they apply to restaurant workers are unique. It is not always easy to know when your employer is violating the law and whether you are getting the full amount of your pay. You may be afraid to ask your boss because you can’t afford to lose your job.
You do not have to face this situation alone. If you think your employer is not paying you wages or tips you have earned, you may be a victim of wage theft and should consider contacting an employment law attorney who has experience with wage-hour cases and the rights of employees who work for tips.
At Leeds Brown, we have the professionals you need. Our lawyers are passionate advocates who fight for employees whenever they are taken advantage of in the workplace. We try to ensure that, in New York, employees keep all the money they rightfully earn. Not receiving all of your tips? Not getting overtime pay or the legal minimum wage? Contact us for a free case evaluation.
What it means to be a tip or tipped employee or worker is defined by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). The FLSA sets most of the rules for overtime, minimum wages, and tips. According to the Act, if you regularly receive over thirty dollars per month in tips, you are considered to be a tipped worker.
If you are by legal definition a tipped employee, you are entitled to keep your tips. They are your property. When your employer retains your tips, asks you to share them, uses them improperly toward your wages or otherwise withholds money you have earned, you may be a victim of wage theft or tip theft. Understanding your rights to retain your gratuities and the obligations of your employer can go a long way towards determining if you need to file an unpaid wage claim. If you have questions about your paycheck and receipt of tips, contact Leeds Brown.
There are very limited circumstances in which your employer may legally “use” your tips.
Tips on Credit Cards – When customers put your tips on credit cards they belong to you. Your employer must pay those tips to you in your next paycheck or before. It does not matter if the credit card company has not yet paid your place of business.
Credit card companies charge a fee, a percentage, to use their services which the business owner typically pays. However, if your customer leaves a tip for you on the credit card, your employer may deduct a portion of the fee from your tip. For example, if a credit card company charges 3% for all transactions, the employer may deduct 3% of your tip amount to put towards the fee.
Attorneys at Leeds Brown know that the rules about paying tipped employees are complicated and that they are rapidly changing. In New York City, Long Island and the surrounding areas, it is hard enough to make ends meet without worrying if you are receiving all of the wages to which you are legally entitled. If you suspect that your employer is stealing your tips or miscalculating your paycheck, contact our office for a free consultation.
Leeds Brown has been litigating and settling wage theft claims for restaurant workers for years and have successfully recovered unpaid wages, unpaid overtime, stolen tips, and other compensation for thousands of employees in the New York City area.
Do not let your employer take wages and tips that belong to you. Call Leeds Brown, professional and passionate advocates for restaurant workers, for a free case evaluation. Someone is here 24/7 to take your call. Time may be of the essence so call wage theft today 1-800-585-4658.