Four former employees of T.G.I. Friday’s, Inc. have filed a putative class action against the restaurant and its parent company, Carlson Restaurants, Inc., to recover unpaid wages, including overtime compensation and unlawful deductions. Flood v. Carlson Restaurants Inc., No. 14-2740 (U.S. Dist. Ct., S.D.N.Y., filed April 17, 2014). The former employees claim that T.G.I. Friday’s managers required them to work in violation of the Fair Labor standards Act and New York Labor Law.
In the complaint, the employees allege that managers required tip-earning workers to do “side work” like rolling silverware, cleaning the restaurant and other tasks that did not merit them tips while the restaurant paid them at the reduced minimum wage reserved for tipped workers. They further allege that managers prevented the employees from receiving their earned overtime pay by lowering the amount of time the employees were on the clock each week to below 40 hours and that the restaurant implemented an unlawful policy requiring tipped employees to pay customer’s bills when the customers failed to pay for their meals.