What Do the Tip Laws Mean to You?

The Massachusetts tip sharing laws strictly regulate what employees can share tips. For instance, your employer isn’t allowed to keep any of your tips – and can’t make you share your tips with just anyone.

A lot of different types of jobs rely on tips – servers, bartenders, baristas, parking attendants, delivery drivers, and many other service industry workers often make almost all their income from tips.

Tipped employees are often required to share tips with – or “tip out” – other people, such as bus persons, back waiters, counter staff, and other “support” employees.

But the tips laws prohibit employers from allowing just anyone in the restaurant and service industry to share in the tip pool or get tipped out.

Under the Massachusetts Tips Act, no employee who has any managerial responsibility can share in tips, and neither can back-of-the-house employees.

In fact, only non-managerial employees who actually serve food or beverages or clear plates can share in tips. Also, the employer (aka “the house”) cannot retain any portion of tips, service charges, or automatic gratuities from private parties or banquets.

We’ve pursued dozens of tip sharing lawsuits and recovered millions of dollars in damages for workers whose employers who have not complied with the tip-sharing laws. If you believe your employer has been keeping some of your tips or has required you to pool or share your tips with an ineligible employee – such as a shift supervisor, bar lead, chef, cleaning person, host, or manager – reach out to us. We’ve been leaders in this field for over a decade.

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