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Is my employer allowed to prevent me from accepting tip? California

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  • Is my employer allowed to prevent me from accepting tip? California

    At my work, we are told that if we accept a tip from a customer, we are fired. Is this legal? I believe I read somewhere that the employer cannot prevent an employee from accepting a tip, but I might be wrong.

    Thank you!

  • #2
    First I've ever heard of such a law. But I'll leave it to those more schooled in CA law to say for certain.
    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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    • #3
      There are many laws. Depends on exactly which law we are talking about and exactly what the laws says.
      - It is perfectly legal for an employer to have a work rule that says employees cannot accept tips and to terminate employees who violate the work rule.
      - HOWEVER, federal law (FLSA) with a few exceptions says that any tips given belong to the employee. CA state law (CLC) says the same thing without exceptions. These laws do what you want them to do however. They just say that the employer cannot legally keep the tip (although for federal purposes only, read the fine print). Both laws are fine with the whole "employees are not allowed to accept tips in the first place" idea and are fine with firing employees who violate this policy.

      So if the employer is pocking tips, there is under CLC and maybe under FLSA recourse. But if the employer is just firing those employee who violate their "no tips" rule, that is legal.
      "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
      Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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