Restaurant bill with dollar bills (tips) on a plate and receipt close up
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Eddy Marban Law

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Tipped Employees

Minimum wage laws require an employee be paid a minimum wage per hour. Minimum wages may vary by state. The employer may elect to pay you as a “tipped employee.” As a tipped employee, the employer may pay you a reduced wage, and the balance must be paid from tips (the “tip credit”). In Florida, the minimum wages for tipped employees are as follows:

Period Reduced wage Tip Credit
January 1, 2007 through December 31, 2007 $3.65 per hour $3.02 per hr.
January 1, 2008 through December 31, 2008 $3.77 per hour $3.02 per hr.
January 1, 2009 through July 23, 2009 $4.19 per hour $3.02 per hr.
July 24, 2009 through May 31, 2011 $4.23 per hour $3.02 per hr.
June 1, 2011 through December 31, 2011 $4.29 per hour $3.02 per hr.
January 1, 2012 through December 31, 2012 $4.65 per hour $3.02 per hr.
January 1, 2013 through the present $4.77 per hour $3.02 per hr.

 

Common violations include

  • Working off-the-clock. You are required to work hours that you are not being paid for, even though your paycheck reflects you are being paid at the minimum wage.
  • Improper sharing of tips. Tips are the property of tipped employees. They may only be shared with other tipped employee (i.e. other waiters, bartenders, parking attendants, delivery drivers). Tips cannot be shared with employees that do not work in the presence of customers (e.g. cooks, expediters, dishwashers).
  • Credit card tips. The employer may deduct the transaction fee charged by the credit card company from the tips. However, the employer may not deduct amounts higher than the transaction fee.
  • Break Time. Deducting time for meal or rest breaks while being required to work during the time. If your meal period is subject to interruption, you may be entitled to compensation or overtime pay.
  • Uniforms. It is unlawful for a uniform deduction to bring an employee’s wages below the minimum wage.
  • Withholding last paycheck. Employers are required to pay employees their wages on the date they are customarily due. The employer cannot withhold the last paycheck, absent extraordinary circumstances. An employee that does not receive their last paycheck is entitled to recover the amount.
  • Overtime Claims. Tipped employees are also entitled to overtime pay at one-and-a-half times the full minimum wage.

The examples set forth above do not represent all forms of minimum wage claims. Our firm has extensive experience in litigating minimum wage claims.  Our firm’s employment and labor attorneys can help you recover the wages you are owed. However, there are some exemptions that apply to minimum wage laws. Our attorneys can help you determine what your rights are with respect to your facts. If you believe you were not paid all of your minimum wages or have any other question regarding your pay, contact us today or call (305) 481-9584.