Attorneys for the plaintiffs announced their filing of a collective action lawsuit against Darden Restaurants, the world’s largest full-service restaurant group, alleging servers were paid less than the minimum wage and were not compensated for time they were required to work off the clock. Darden’s primary brand names, including The Capital Grille, Longhorn Steakhouse, Olive Garden and Red Lobster.
The suit was filed in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.It alleges that Darden violated the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) by paying many of its servers below the applicable minimum wage, which can be as low as $2.13 per hour for tipped work (such as waiting tables) and $7.25 an hour for non-tipped work, and by failing to pay overtime.
Servers were required to work off the clock at both the beginning and end of their shifts, and as a result they were not paid for all the time they were required to work. In addition, many servers were improperly paid tipped wages ($2.13 per hour) when they were performing non-tipped work, such as refilling dispensers, rolling silverware, and cleaning.
“The Fair Labor Standards Act provides employees the ability to join forces in a collective action’ and seek justice from large corporations that they could not afford to bring on their own,” said David Lichter, a co-founder and partner of Higer Lichter & Givner, one of the law firms representing plaintiffs in this case.
All current or former servers at Olive Garden, Red Lobster, Longhorn Steakhouse, or The Capital Grille restaurants employed at any time from August 2009 to the present may learn about the resources and legal options available to them and participate in this case by visiting www.DardenLawsuit.com.
Posted by Lauren Grelle