Some employers try to deduct money from employee wages to cover their overhead, which the employer should be responsible for paying. For example, a business may try to deduct money from a server’s tips for such expenses as uniforms, register shortages, walk-outs, returned food, broken plates, or damaged property. If such deductions cause a worker’s hourly wage to fall below the applicable minimum wage, the deduction may be illegal. These improper deductions often occur in the hospitality industry where restaurant…

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A former server at South Florida Barbeque, Inc., doing business as Sonny’s Real Pit Bar-B-Q, has filed a case in court seeking to bring a class action for alleged tip theft. Like many restaurants, Sonny’s takes a “tip credit,” and pays its servers $3.02 less than the Florida minimum wage. The server in that case claims Sonny’s maintained an illegal tip pool by using server tips to supplement the wages of non-tipped employees such as dishwashers, salad preparers, and managers…

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The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals recently handed down a decision, Polycarpe v. E&S Landscaping Services, Inc., which rejected the argument by several employers that they were not a covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) as an enterprise because their business were local in nature. The businesses at issue performed landscaping, construction work, alarm system installation, or shutter installation. The Polycarpe decision reversed a number of trial courts that had erroneously restricted FLSA coverage. It essentially put the…

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