A recent article in the New York Times, Speed, Tips and Fear on Wheels, detailed the difficult working conditions of restaurant delivery workers in New York.
There happen to be very specific requirements under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the New York State Labor Law as to how delivery persons in New York should be paid – – even though these requirements are frequently ignored.
First, delivery persons in New York are entitled to a “tipped minimum wage” of $5.65 per hour. Second, delivery workers are entitled to keep all of the tips they receive and management cannot skim their tips. Third, delivery workers are entitled to overtime after 40 hours worked. Fourth, deliver workers are entitled to an extra hour of pay at full minimum wage ($7.25) when their workday is longer than ten hours (this is called “spread of hours” pay). Penalties for failure to comply with these laws include back wages, liquidated damages, interest and attorneys’ fees.