The Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) requires that employers pay a certain minimum wage to all nonexempt employees. The current federally mandated minimum wage is at least $7.25 per hour for all non-exempt employees. Many states also have minimum wage laws. When an employee is subject to both state and federal minimum wage laws, the higher minimum wage applies.
If you are compensated based upon tips that you receive, the employer is required to pay at least $2.13 per hour if the amount in tips received equals at least the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour. In addition, the employee must receive more than $30.00 per month in tips and be able to retain all of the tips he receives. If the tips received and the cash wage (at least $2.13 per hour) paid by the employer do not equal the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour, the employer must pay the employee additional money to ensure that they are receiving the federal minimum wage.
Employees who are younger than 20 years old must be paid a minimum wage of $4.25 per hour during their first ninety consecutive days of employment, so long as they are not displacing other employees. However, the employee must receive the federal minimum wage of $7.25 per hour when they turn 20 years old or after ninety consecutive days of employment.
Common Minimum Wage Violations
Cash Register Shortage Reimbursements
Cashiers in retail stores can be subject to illegal reimbursement deduction policies for cash register shortages. Employers are not permitted to make payroll deductions that result in the payment of less than the state or federal minimum wage.
Restaurant Walk-Out / Shortage Reimbursements
Servers and other restaurant employees can be subject to illegal reimbursement policies when they are forced to pay for customers who do not pay their bills or when they are required to make up shortages. Employers are not permitted to make payroll deductions that result in the payment of less than the state or federal minimum wage.
Uniform Cost and Maintenance
If an employer requires an employee to bear the costs associated with purchasing and maintaining uniforms, those costs cannot result in reducing the employee’s pay below the applicable minimum wage.
Tips/Commission Only Jobs
If your commissions or tips do not allow you to make at least the minimum wage, your employer typically must make up the difference.
Tip Credit Violations
You are required to participate in a tip pool or required to share tips with supervisors, managers, or other employees who do not receive tips (such as chefs, cooks, dish washers, expediters, salad preparers, and service bar employees);
You are paid of tip credit hourly rate ($2.13 per hour) for all working hours, but required to spend more than 20% of your working hours performing non-tipped work such as attending meetings, washing dishes, cleaning, set-up, tear-down, or other duties that do not produce tips;
Your employer deducts excessive amounts from your tips to cover credit card charges; and/or
You are not permitted to keep your tips.
Minimum Wage FAQ
If you have questions about any of the minimum wage issues described above, contact The Law Office of Robert J. Hunt, LLC for additional information. The Law Office of Robert J. Hunt, LLC represents employees in federal minimum wage lawsuits throughout the United States.