/ June 3, 2009

Starbucks Wins Dismissal of $86 Million Labor Law Verdict

Starbucks shift supervisors rejoice! A California appeals court has ruled you can keep your tips. Starbucks also will avoid an $86 million dollar judgement against them for allowing shift supervisors to collect a portion of the days tips. Starbucks policy is to allow an equal distribution of the tips to all those working that day. A group of baristas filed suit, claiming that shift supervisors are in management, and under California law, they should not be allowed to claim any of the tips left by customers. The Leighton v. Old Heidelberg, Ltd. case was seen as the precedent for the baristas claim (Fastcase Subscription or free 24 hour trial required).

The court found that since tips are gathered collectively and distributed equally among all employees that Starbucks was not in violation of the law. The appeals judge stated that “there is no logical basis for concluding that §351 prohibits an employer from allowing the shift supervisor to retain his or her portion of a collective tip that was intended for the entire team of service employees.” Read the full text of the ruling here.

Source: Law.com

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