Tip-pooling is a touchy subject, and a complicated one. The owner of Wynn Casinos in Las Vegas is learning this the hard way as he faces a lawsuit from his dealers.
Traditionally, dealers have been among the most prosperous casino employees as they have direct access to customers. Because of their large tips, dealers frequently go home with more money than their supervisors. The owner of Wynn Casinos looked to remedy this by allegedly forcing the dealers to share their tips with their supervisors. The reason for this is, supposedly, because supervisors also directly impact customer satisfaction. Therefore, giving them a share of the tips would motivate them to provide better customer service.
Enraged by the new policy, which was put in place in 2006, the dealers joined the Travel Workers Union and filed a complaint with the labor commissioner’s office of Nevada. The labor commissioner’s office sided with the casino, saying that, because the casino did not directly benefit from the new tip-sharing policy, it did not violate Nevada labor laws.
An employment lawsuit was also filed in the Clark County District Court, where the labor commissioner’s decision was overruled. Judge Kenneth Cory decided that the casino did, in fact, directly benefit from the new tip-sharing policy by using the tips to substitute higher salaries for the managers.
Wynn has appealed the decision and the Culinary and Bartender unions have joined in the fight on the side of the casinos. There has been some speculation that this allegiance is due to the face that Wynn signed a generous 10-year contract with the unions in 2005.
They deny these allegations however, saying they are afraid that, if the court sides with the dealers, it could affect tip-sharing policies with bartenders, busboys, and dishwashers, which are currently standard practice all over Nevada
The attorneys at Chicago Overtime Law Center have decades of experience litigating wage and hour cases including overtime, breaks, vacation pay, and tips. Our offices are conveniently located in Oak Brook Terrace and Chicago, Illinois and we handle cases throughout Cook, DuPage, Kane, Will, McHenry and Lake Counties. If you believe you have been denied overtime wages, contact a Aurora Unpaid Overtime attorney attorney today at 312-869-4095 or fill out our online form.