Maine Fish Market, a popular seafood restaurant in East Windsor, Connecticut, paid $750,000 in back wages to approximately 70 employees for unpaid wages and tip theft violations. The class action lawsuit alleged that Maine Fish Market neglected to pay the federal minimum wage to its servers and bartenders and failed to pay overtime wages to the restaurant’s kitchen workers. In addition, servers claim they were unlawfully required to pay for breakages, customer walkouts, and uniforms. The restaurant also took ten to fifteen percent of each servers’ tips on a daily basis and allegedly used this money to pay other employees’ wages. As per the Fair Labor Standards Act and the Connecticut Minimum Wage Act, employers are not entitled to any of the tips earned by servers.
McDonald’s will pay $1.5 million to settle a lawsuit claiming that its restaurants failed to pay workers uniform maintenance pay and did not compensate them for time spent cleaning and pressing their uniforms.
The lawsuit, filed in New York federal court in March 2014, was brought against McDonald’s locations in New York State. Attorneys for the restaurant workers alleged that McDonald’s imposed cleanliness standards on its workers but failed to provide employees with mandated uniform maintenance payments required by New York law or pay them for the time spent keeping the uniforms clean. McDonalds denied liability, claiming that it provided workers with sufficient number of uniform’s that could be washed with other clothes.
The settlement covers an estimated 10,400 hourly non-managerial workers who worked at McDonald’s restaurants in New York State from March 13, 2008 through May 10, 2016. Each class member will receive a settlement payment calculated in accordance with a distribution formula based on the number of workweeks and hours worked during the covered period.
Today is National Waiters and Waitresses Day. To commemorate, check out this blog about the top ten wage violations in the restaurant industry written by waiterpay.com founder Louis Pechman, featured on the Huffington Post.
TGI Friday’s was hit with a lawsuit by its servers for violations of state and federal wage payment laws. According to the lawyers for the workers, which include current and former servers, bussers, runners, bartenders, barbacks, hosts, and other tipped workers, the restaurant chain faces a national class action lawsuit as a result of the alleged violations of workers’ rights.
The Complaint, which was filed in federal court by four former TGI Friday’s workers from the New York metro area, alleges that the restaurant required tipped workers to arrive at work before their scheduled start time and to stay at work after the restaurant closed without receiving the minimum wages and overtime to which they were entitled under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and New York Labor Law (NYLL).
In addition, the workers allege that the restaurant shaved hours from employee time records and allowed employees to work off-the-clock to perform side work such as cleaning the restaurant, preparing food in bulk for customers, cutting produce, refilling condiments, and stocking and replenishing the bar and service areas.
The lawsuit seeks to recover minimum wages, overtime compensation, spread-of-hours pay, misappropriated tips, uniform-related expenses, unlawful deductions, and other wages for current and former workers at TGI Friday’s restaurants throughout the nation owned and/or operated by Carrollton, Texas-based Carlson Restaurants Inc., Carlson Restaurants Worldwide Inc., and TGI Friday’s Inc. nationwide.
McDonald’s was hit with seven lawsuits by workers in California, Michigan, and New York, who claimed that the company and some franchise owners failed to pay the employees for all hours worked, failed to pay them overtime, shaved their hours from their time cards, and ordered them to work “off the clock.”
In California, lawsuits were filed against area restaurants, including one filed against 100 McDonald’s owned and operated by the company itself. In Michigan, attorneys for the workers allege that fast food restaurants told their employees to show up for work, but only paid them after having them wait an hour or two for more customers to arrive. The New York lawsuit alleges that McDonald’s failed to reimburse its staff for the laundering and maintenance of their uniforms, or the time spent doing so, even though the restaurant provided them with only one uniform and required a clean uniform to be worn each day. Because of these and other worker rights violations, the lawyers for the restaurant workers are seeking reimbursement for unpaid wages, liquidated damages, and other relief.
These lawsuits come on the heels of several strikes organized in New York to pressure McDonald’s and other fast-food restaurants to increase the minimum wage.