If I am a receive tips for a portion of the time I am on the clock, should I get minimum wage for the untipped time?

I receive pooled tips at a restaurant and get paid $4.23 an hour but only get tipped for a portion of the time I am on the clock. There is about an hour of mandatory work that I do not receive tips but still get paid $4.23 instead of the standard minimum wage.

Asked on December 3, 2011 under Employment Labor Law, Florida

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

The law does not consider it hour by hour, but rather on the basis of the work week.

For a work week, the tips you receive, plus the hourly wage for the number of hours, must equal or exceed receiving minimum wage for the number of hours you worked. Consider a 40-hour work week: you should earn at least $290  (using the $7.25/hour federal minimum). Say you were paid (using $4.25 per hour, to make the math simple) $170 in wages. As long as, for that week, you received at least $120 in tips, you were paid adequately. In practice, some hours you'll earn much more than minimum; other hours, you'll earn less; but as long as, in the aggregate, you are earning minimum wage or better, that is ok.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.