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My employers taxes me heavily, is this legal? (Florida) Florida

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  • My employers taxes me heavily, is this legal? (Florida) Florida

    Hello everyone, let me start off by saying this is my first post and I apologize if this has already been asked before.

    I work in a privately owned restaurant, and my job requires me to take orders, run food, answer the phone for, drive to do delivery orders, bus tables, wash dishes, and clean after closing. The business hours are from 10am-2:30pm(lunch) and then 4pm-9:30pm (dinner) Monday-Thursday. Friday is 10am-2:30pm and 4-10:30pm. Saturday is 4-10:30.
    The pay for all that work I am required to do is $10 for a shift from 10am-2:30pm for lunch, and $10 for a shift from 4-10:30. So I make $20. The majority of my pay comes from tips, which myself and another server pool and divide by 2. However my employer taxes our credit card tips 15.65%, so say I we make $120 in credit card tips, she takes $18.78 for "tax" which she claims is normal. Not only that but after we are taxed, she takes $15 from our cash tips (only on friday and saturday), and divides it between 2 members of the kitchen, we are not allowed to say no to this. I have objected paying the kitchen staff our tips but she take its anyway.

    One last issue I would like to point is is when doing deliveries. We are not paid for gas, or even insured by the restaurant for delivering food while working. We must use our own vehicles and pay for our own gas. Our delivery tips are also taxed 15.65%.

    Is this legal?

    *edit* I forgot to mention, only one of the all around server workers are on the books, while 6 work there (only 2 at a time though). I am not the one on the books.
    Last edited by Warnerzac; 03-09-2013, 07:14 PM.

  • #2
    If you think you are not treated fairly, report this to the Florida DOL.

    If you are being paid under the table, you might also report this to the IRS, but they will come after you also for not reporting income. However, there is a reward for tax cheats.

    Off of the top of my head, it sounds like you are being ripped off.

    http://www.minimum-wage.org/states.asp?state=Florida

    http://www.minimum-wage.org/florida-...e-minimum-wage

    Comment


    • #3
      Fl. doesn't really have a DOL to take wage claims/complaints. It would have to be the federal DOL (though they are only concerned with fed. min. wage & OT) or a small claims court action.
      Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

      Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

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      • #4
        Then there is the tax theft.

        The IRS hates competition

        Comment


        • #5
          The IRS hates everyone!

          (just kidding IRS people)
          Last edited by Betty3; 03-10-2013, 10:08 AM.
          Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

          Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

          Comment


          • #6
            If you are not on the books what "tax" is she withholding? From credit card tips, she is allowed to withhold the amount the company is charged by the credit card company (usually a few percent).

            Comment


            • #7
              Everyone working for tips needs to be very familar with the following federal rules on tips.
              http://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/whdfs15.htm

              I am not going to bother repeating all of the rules discussed in the factsheet, but I will give an example which address some of the OP concerns. Bob works 40 hours this workweek in FL. Federal law basically says three things:
              - The employer must pay out of their own pocket at least $2.13/hr.
              - The employee must receive a total of at least $7.25/hr which can include tips. If the employee receives less then $5.12/hr per tips in any workweek, the employer is legally required to make this up.
              - There is a federal tip rule that says that the MW obligations must be "free and clear" of any unreimbursed business expenses. This rule does not say that the employer must always reimburse business expenses, but it sometimes has that effect. Lets say that Bob is paid EXACTLY $2.13/hr by the employer and makes EXACTLY $5.12/hr in tips. This means that all out of pocket expenses related to the delivery expenses violate the FLSA free and clear rule. HOWEVER, increase tips a bit and maybe it does not.

              IRS (different issue) would have a problem with the employee paying for both parts of the FICA tax. DOL might have a problem with the deduction if the free and clear rule is violated by this.

              Last point. This is a bad employer. I am fine with a small claims court action or a federal DOL wage claim, but this will remain a bad employer. And we are talking about a minimum wage job here. At some point, the best cure for a bad employer is to find a good employer.
              Last edited by DAW; 03-11-2013, 09:25 AM.
              "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
              Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

              Comment


              • #8
                Last point. This is a bad employer. I am fine with a small claims court action or a federal DOL wage claim, but this will remain a bad employer. And we are talking about a minimum wage job here. At some point, the best cure for a bad employer is to find a good employer.
                It seems there are fewer and fewer "good" employers out there.

                Comment


                • #9
                  That may be but at the same time, employees who are satisfied with their employers don't write to legal message boards.
                  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.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Good thing we get paid by the word!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      The tip rules are fairly complicated. It is easy for the employer to make mistakes and it is easy for certain employers to delibarately break the law under cover of these arcane rules. However, there are a lot of MW employers. I am unclear why anyone would stay with a bad MW employer. Plenty of more MW employers out there, all of which are probably not bad employers.
                      "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
                      Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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