Can an employer refuse to give a tip to a server without informing the server?

I work in a bar at a ski resort. At the end of the day we have to adjust our credit card tips and enter the amount of the tip and the then the total in to the POS (Point of Sale) computer. After that we can collect the amount of the tips that are totaled by the POS machine. So, for instance, if I have a charge of $20 with a $5 tip and a charge of $80 with a $20 tip I obviously go home with $25. Here is the rub, the ski area says that if we “mis-adjust” out tips (for instance entering the tip as $2 instead of $20) we will only be paid the amount that we adjust it for. Yesterday my boss closed out the POS machine before I got a chance to adjust any of my tips (that would have totaled to $68). So, the company says I don’t get the tips. This seems like fraud to me, not just committed against me the employee but also against the consumer who believed that they tipped their server.

Asked on March 11, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Colorado


FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

Based upon the question that you have written and the facts pertaining to it, your employer is required to give its employee the full tip earned and to allow the employee to re-adjust the entry of the totals for the bills to show the proper charge to the customer and the tip that the employee earned.

If your employer refuses to change his or her policy on the subject, then your options are to consult with an attorney that practices in the area of employment law and/or make a complaint with your local labor department.

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