Gallagher’s Steakhouse in New York City and its owner, long time Long Island Restauranteur Dean Poll has been sued for wage theft, including failure to pay minimum wage and overtime pay, in violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act and the New York Labor Law. In the lawsuit, a former waiter at the restaurant claims Gallagher’s paid all front of the house employees working at the restaurant at the tipped minimum wage, which is currently $7.50 per hour in New York, without giving them notice of the restaurant’s intent to utilize the tip credit. The lawsuit states that due to the misuse of the tip credit, Gallagher’s paid its workers the wrong overtime rate for all hours worked each week over forty.
Dean Poll, who owns Gallagher’s Steakhouse as well as The Loeb Boathouse in New York City’s Central Park, is accused of “blatantly stealing wages” from Gallagher’s wait staff. Attorneys for the worker allege that Gallagher’s automatically deducted pay for restaurant workers’ thirty-minute lunch breaks, even though the restaurant knew that the workers were not actually taking these breaks. As a result, wages for the waitstaff were cut by two and-a-half hours each week. The wage theft lawsuit also claims that Gallagher’s failed to provide servers with proper notice of wages at their time of hiring and accurate pay statements with each payment as required under the New York Labor Law.
Pechman Law Group has successfully settled several cases for restaurant workers employed at New York City steakhouses, including a record $3.15 million settlement with Sparks Steak House in New York City for an illegal tip pooling scheme.