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How Wage Theft Happens to Tipped Employees in FloridaClient-Focused & Passionate Representation

How Wage Theft Happens to Tipped Employees in Florida


Wage theft is against the law in many different contexts, but it can be surprisingly easy to hide when it comes to tipped employees in Florida. Whenever it does occur, you can be sure that officials will take action as they did recently against an employer. The US Department of Labor – Wage and Hour Division (WHD) announced a lawsuit in federal court against a restaurant that created a scheme for stealing tips from servers.

WHD will be seeking a range of damages through its lawsuit against the restaurant, including liquidated damages. If you have suspicions about a scam involving tipped employees at your place of work, get in touch with a Florida wage theft attorney right away. You may have options to seek relief as an individual if your employer engages in misconduct with respect to your wages. Some information about the recent legal action is also useful for understanding the role of WHD with wage theft.

Wage Theft Schemes: In the recent case, the restaurant owners developed a scheme for stealing tipped employee wages through manipulating credit cards and cash tips. The WHD investigated to find that the owners would collect all cash tips earned by servers, as well as the tip amounts left on credit cards. Instead of distributing them to servers, food runners, bartenders, and hosts, the restaurant deposited these amounts into a business account. Once a week, the company would wire transfer just a portion of the funds, resulting in wage theft.

The WHD seeks around $250,000 in back wages, as well as an equal amount as liquidated damages. In sum, 18 employees were affected, and they will split the damages amount.

 Remedies for Wage Theft: Lawmakers considered it critical that dishonest companies be brought to justice for illegal actions involving employee wages. The FLSA includes provisions that allow the government to pursue an investigation and lawsuit against an employer, which is how the recent case involving wage theft of tipped employees was initiated. An employee could file a wage claim with the WHD regarding details, and officials manage the proceedings. However, you can also pursue a private lawsuit as plaintiff to seek damages for your stolen wages and other damages.

 Liquidated Damages in Wage Theft Cases: In general terms, liquidated damages involve an amount that a party can recover because it is provided by law or a contract. In wage theft cases, the FLSA dictates that liquidated damages should be equal to unpaid wages when an employee prevails. Therefore, the total amount possible for wage theft could double your damages.

 Speak to a Palm Beach County Wage Theft Lawyer About Your Rights

The WHD can act on behalf of employees, but you may also have rights as an individual. To learn more about pursuing a claim for wage theft, please contact Sconzo Law Office. You can reach our firm in Palm Beach Gardens by calling 561-279-6114 or visiting our website. One of our Florida wage theft attorneys can advise you on your rights after reviewing details.

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