COLUMBUS — A pair of former restaurant workers for an Athens, Ohio Buffalo Wild Wings location recently filed an unpaid overtime lawsuit against the site’s parent company over allegations that the company’s managers committed rampant wage theft against front-of-house staff. As is often the case in these types of lawsuits, the plaintiffs allege that the defendants attempted to take advantage of the lower hourly wages paid to tip-earning employees to perform non-service work and keep payrolls down at the expense of hard working employees trying to earn a living.
The unpaid overtime lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, claims that the defendants failed to pay workers for all their time spent on the job, including overtime wages. The plaintiffs allege the defendant forced them and others to clock out but continue to work for free performing tasks like cleaning bathrooms and dining rooms, mopping floors, food prep work, and other non-tipped work.
Under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), tip earning workers may be paid less than the applicable state or federal minimum wage but may not spend more than 20% of their time on the job performing duties unrelated to serving restaurant guests. Furthermore, while employers are within their rights to create a tip pool from server tips to compensate other tip earning workers supporting front of house operations, the tip pool cannot be used to supplement the income of workers performing tasks outside the front of house.
The complaint asks for a trial by jury to recover a multitude of damages including unpaid regular and overtime wages with interest, liquidated damages equal to back pay, attorneys fees, court costs, and any other relief the court may see fit to award. Furthermore, the lawsuit seeks class action statutes to allow any other servers working for the franchise’s ownership company to join in and recover their own lost wages and hold the defendant accountable for wage theft.
Restaurant Worker Unpaid Overtime Lawsuit
Call (855) 754-2795 or complete the Free Unpaid Overtime Case Review form on the top right of this page if you believe that your wage rights are being violated under the FLSA. Our top-rated team of unpaid wage lawyers will evaluate your situation to determine your best course of action to help you seek justice.
Our office will also determine if it is in your best interest to file a lawsuit against your employer. Because strict time limitations apply for filing these types of claims, we advise you contact our experienced unpaid overtime wage attorneys at your earliest convenience and preserve your legal rights.