Home  >  Cases We Handle  >  Unpaid Overtime Claims  >  Hotel and Restaurant Workers

Texas Hotel and Restaurant Workers Overtime Attorney

Off-The-Clock Violations

The law generally requires that all workers are entitled to minimum wage and overtime pay. Employers in the Hotel and Restaurant Industry often violate the law by paying workers below minimum wage (currently $7.25 per hour) for all hours worked and failing to pay time-and-one-half for all hours over 40 worked in a week. The most common violations are requiring employees to:

  • Begin working before their shift starts.
  • Continue working after their shift ends.
  • Work during breaks and meal periods.

Tipped Employee Violations

A worker is considered a tipped employee if “he or she customarily and regularly receives more than $30 per month in tips.” Tipped employees usually include waiters, servers, counter personnel, bussers, service bartenders, and hotel bellhops. Federal law requires that an employer of a tipped employee pay them a minimum of $2.13 per hour in direct wages. It is also required that those wages combined with tips pay the employee at least minimum wage (currently $7.25 per hour). The difference between the $2.13 minimum hourly rate and federal minimum wage is called a “tip credit.” When the $2.13 minimum hourly rate combined with the employee’s tips is less than $7.25, the employer must provide the employee with the difference out of pocket. In addition, the employer may require that a portion of the employee’s tips enter into a “tip pool” so that they can distribute tips one person receives to other employees. However, to be legal, the tips may be shared only with certain other employees.

Violations of Minimum and Overtime Wage Laws

It is common for employers to violate minimum wage and overtime laws when paying tipped employees. Common violations include:

  • Not providing workers with a paycheck. Some employers do not pay wages and their servers work solely for tips. This practice violates the FLSA.
  • Failing to provide minimum wage. Your employer is never allowed to pay you less than the minimum wage, even if you have a slow shift.
  • Requiring you to share tips with employees who do not customarily receive tips. Your employer can require you to share tips with servers, counter personnel, bellhops, bussers, and service bartenders. However, they cannot require you to share tips with managers, dishwashers, cooks, chefs, or janitors.
  • Requiring you to give a portion of your tips to the employer. An employer cannot legally keep any portion of your tips for personal gain.
  • Not paying overtime for hours worked over 40 in a workweek or only paying time-and-a-half of the server rate and not the full minimum wage. In other words, unless your state has a minimum wage higher than the federal minimum wage, your employer must pay you at least $10.88 for each overtime hour you work.
  • Requiring you to work off the clock. An employer may not require you to do any work without pay.

If you work as a tipped employee and your employer has committed any of the violations listed above, speak with a qualified employment law attorney today.

Contact a Hotel and Restaurant Workers Overtime Attorney

Our Board Certified Employment Law Specialist can help you determine whether you are entitled to compensation for minimum wage or overtime violations. You may also receive additional money for liquidated damages, attorney’s fees, and other costs.

To find out more about what an employment law attorney can do for you, consult with an attorney at the Leichter Law Firm PC. Our team is dedicated to helping you receive the money you worked hard to earn. Call us at (956) 205-0884 to discuss your legal options.