A menu of rights for New York restaurant workers


For any hours you work over 40 per week, you must receive overtime.

Spread of Hours Pay

You may be entitled to an extra hour of pay when your work day spans more than ten hours.

Service Charge

A “service charge” or fixed gratuity belongs to the waitstaff.

Hours Worked

You should be paid for any time you are required to be in the restaurant.


Your restaurant cannot charge you for customer walkouts or breakage.


You cannot be charged for buying or cleaning a uniform.

Minimum Wage

Your restaurant must pay you a minimum wage of at least $8.00 per hour, or at least $5.00 per hour (effective January 1, 2011) if it takes a “tip credit.”

Tip Splitting

Restaurants cannot require servers to share their tips with non-service employees

Credit Card Fees

An employer can deduct from charged tips no more than the credit card processing fees assessed on the charged tips.