Tag Archives: Waiters

New York City’s Gramercy Tavern Will Pay $695,000 to Restaurant Workers for Wage Theft

Gramercy Tavern, the popular Danny Meyer-owned upscale eatery located in New York City’s Flatiron District has agreed to pay $695,000 to current and former restaurant workers for wage theft violations, including an allegedly illegal tip pool and failure to pay workers the minimum wage.  The lawsuit, brought by two former bussers, claims Gramercy Tavern engaged in unlawful tip pooling practices by requiring service employees, such as service staff, bussers, runners, captains, and other service workers to share their tips with non-service employees. According to the lawsuit, these non-service employees included expeditors, silverware polishers, wine managers, and other workers who did not regularly and customarily interact with customers.

The bussers had claimed Gramercy Tavern used a tip credit to pay its workers at the tipped minimum wage, despite retaining a portion of the tips shared by employees and requiring them to participate in the illegal tip pool with non-service employees.  Employers may not use a tip credit unless the service employees retain 100% of all tips and gratuities they receive.

The workers also alleged that Gramercy Tavern required clients to pay an automatic “service charge” of 20% of the total bill for private events, but that none of these gratuities were distributed to the event’s service workers, in violation of the New York Labor Law.

The settlement will be distributed to approximately 220 waiters, waitresses, captains, bussers, food runners, and coffee runners who worked at Gramercy Tavern at any time between June 23, 2011 and September 15, 2016.  The settlement was approved on May 17, 2017 by Judge James C. Francis, a federal judge in New York.


Tips For Jesus

Customers affiliated with the handle @TipsForJesus are leaving bartenders and servers thousands of dollars in tips.  The generous tips are detailed on the  TipsForJesus Instagram account.  The Instagram account has the motto “ Doing the Lord’s work, one tip at a time.”  According to Gawker, TipsForJesus customers have left $54,000 to waiters, waitresses, and bartenders across the country.

Steak N Shake Restaurants Hit with Overtime Lawsuit

steak and shake logo

A lawsuit filed in Georgia federal court accuses Steak N Shake restaurants of failing to pay its employees minimum wage and overtime pay.

The Complaint alleges that restaurant management adjusted the weekly tips and hours of the restaurant’s waiters and other employees.  Attorneys for the workers claim in the lawsuit that the restaurant prepared “Audit Trail Reports” which show the original clock-in and clock-out time, the original tip amount for servers as well as the changes made by managers and on what date the changes were made — thus establishing a paper trail of the alleged illegal time shaving.