The Jue Lan Club, the trendy Hamptons restaurant, nightclub and art gallery that made headlines for offering a $27,000 bottle of Dom Perignon Rose*, cheated workers out of the minimum wage, overtime pay and tips according to a class action lawsuit filed in New York federal court.
Attorneys for the workers claim that the Jue Lan Club and Stratis Morfogen, its principal owner, failed to pay its servers overtime pay of one-and-one-half times their hourly rate for all weekly hours worked over forty, even though waiters worked 60+ hours a week. The lawsuit further alleges that Jue Lan unlawfully required its waiters, bussers, and bartenders to give a portion of their tips to managers and back of the house staff, including dishwashers.
Restaurant workers in Long Island are reminded that beginning in 2017, their employers must pay them at least $10.00 per hour worked. An exception to this rule exists for tipped food service employees in restaurants, such as bartenders, servers, and bussers, who can be paid $7.50 per hour as long as the restaurant gives them proper notice of the “tip credit” laws. To do so, the restaurant must provide them with a written notice explaining, among other things, that tipped employees make at least $2.50 per hour in tips. The notice must also state that if the tipped employees failed to make at least $2.50 in tips per hour worked in a workweek, the restaurant will pay them the difference between the amounts that they actually made in tips per hour and the required minimum of $2.50. Moreover, all restaurant employees who work over forty hours per workweek must be paid one and one-half times their regularly hourly wage rates per hour worked over forty. The minimum overtime wage rate in Long Island is $15.00. Once again, tipped employees’ rates can be lower as long as the restaurant complied with the notice requirements explained above. Tipped employees who work more than forty hours per workweek must be paid at least $12.50 per hour worked over forty.