Comprehensive Handbook Helped Lead to Dismissal of Case

January 2014Articles Hospitality Law

Complying with Fair Labor Standards Act posting requirements and maintaining a comprehensive handbook are key strategies hospitality companies can use to defend themselves in the event of an FLSA retaliation claim. In Barquin v. Monty’s Sunset, LLC, No. 12-cv-24180 (S.D. Fla. 10/02/13), former front of the house employees of restaurant Monty’s Sunset brought an action alleging that Monty’s terminated their employment in violation of the FLSA.

Servers employed by operated by Monty’s Sunset, LLC, alleged that their employment was terminated after they complained about high credit card fees, high tip outs and other issues related to their compensation. Notably, the complaint did not allege that Monty’s failed to pay the severs minimum wage or overtime. In addition, the workers alleged, under state law, that Monty’s tortuously interfered with their business relationship with customers by enacting a policy that prohibited customers from leaving a tip beyond an automatic service charge when such charge was added to a customer’s bill.

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