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Has recent federal legislation shaped how tip pooling is handled?

The U.S. Congress made changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) in the spring of 2018. One of the primary matters that the legislators addressed with these policy updates is how tip pooling should be handled.

Representatives with the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) introduced a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in December 2017. That NPRM called for the rescission of certain tip regulations instituted in 2011 by President Barack Obama's administration.

The earlier legislation made it illegal for bar, restaurant and over food service workers to create tipping pools if they were going to be used to pay employees that were going to be used to pay all types of workers. The Obama-era legislation made it where employers who paid their workers federal minimum wage and did not receive a tip credit could lawfully set up a tip pool if they wanted to.

It wasn't until the Consolidated Appropriations Act went into effect on March 23, 2018, that the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) was updated. It now reflects that employees can't be made to share their tips with their supervisors or managers regardless of whether a worker's employer ultimately takes a tip credit or not.

This latest FLSA amendment left it up to cities and states to implement their tip pools and credits policies though.

Violations of DOL regulations or existing federal laws are serious offenses. If you suspect that your employer has engaged in impropriety or some other type of unlawful action, then you owe it to yourself to speak up. A Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) attorney in Pittsburgh can advise you what rules apply in your Pennsylvania case and help guide you in filing a claim to recover any compensation that you're due.

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