Updated: Sep 11, 2020
We are pleased to report that, after a lengthy legal battle with Captain George’s Seafood Restaurant, settlement checks are going out in the mail. On May 29, 2019, the federal district court in for the Eastern District of Virginia approved a settlement of over $2,400,000, to be divided (after fees and costs) among approximately 370 restaurant workers including servers, bussers, buffet runners, and bartenders. The settlement agreement allowed Captain George’s to pay the settlement money on October 1, 2019.
In the wage theft lawsuit, the restaurant workers alleged that Captain George’s:
- Unlawfully retained tip money by both diverting some of the money to non-tipped workers and simply retaining the money in the restaurant’s bank account;
- Underpaid overtime wages by calculating time-and-a-half based on the tipped minimum wage rate rather than full minimum wage;
- Required servers to pay for non-employee “silverware rollers” to roll silverware;
- Required servers to buy uniform shirts at the start of their employment;
- Paid a tipped wage rate of $2.125 instead of the federal tipped wage rate of $2.13;
- Failed to provide tipped workers with a proper notice regarding the Fair Labor Standards Act’s tip credit provisions;
Captain George’s denied that they broke the law and, as part of the settlement agreement, Captain George’s did not admit liability for any of these claims.
We consider this settlement a big win for the employees who joined the case.
An unusual aspect of this case is that, at Captain George’s request, the lawsuit was split into two parts. The first part included all of the federal claims (described above) and remained in a Virginia federal court. That part is covered under the settlement. The second part includes South Carolina state law claims. That case is in a South Carolina federal court and is still ongoing. We hope to recover more money for the workers at the Myrtle Beach location for the South Carolina law claims.
If you have any questions about this lawsuit or are facing similar issues at work, please feel free to contact us.
ADVERTISING ONLY: The information on this blog is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for individual advice regarding your own situation.
Past results obtained by Biller & Kimble, LLC are no guarantee of future results. Each case or matter is different and must be judged on its own merits.
BK is located at 3825 Edwards Ave., Ste. 650, Cincinnati, Ohio 45208. Its partners, Andy Biller and Andrew Kimble, operate a nationwide practice representing pizza delivery drivers in mileage under-reimbursement claims.