Tips on Tips: How to Legally Account for and Pay Tipped Wages to Your Taproom & Brewpub Employees

Craft Brewers Conference 2023
Location: Nashville, Tennessee
Speakers: Jon Hyman

No employment law is more misunderstood and misapplied by employers than the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), our federal wage and hour law. There are more than 8,000 federal FLSA lawsuits filed per year, with nearly one-quarter filed against employers in the hospitality industry…including taprooms and brewpubs.

These employers get themselves in legal trouble because of the special manner in which hospitality industry employees are compensated. If you employ workers who customarily and regularly receive more than $30 a month in tips (and every taproom and brewpub does), there are two key FLSA phrases you must understand to avoid legal landmines in how you pay your employees—tip credit and tip pool.

In this informative session, nationally recognized employment law attorney Jon Hyman will share everything taprooms and brewpubs need to know about tip credits and tip pools to ensure, as best as possible, that you are paying your employees correctly and legally. It not only keeps your employees engaged and content, but it also keeps you away from expensive and distracting lawsuits.

Learning Objectives:

  • Who is a "tipped employee" and how do the "80/20 rule" and "30-minute rule" help define who is and is not a tipped employee? What is a tip credit and how is it properly applied against a taproom's or brewpub's minimum wage obligations? What is a tip pool and how is it legally managed? What are the legal limits on who can and cannot be included a tip pool? Which states impose legal obligations greater than that which the Fair Labor Standards Act applies under federal law?

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