Tutti Frutti Frozen Yogurt to Pay Damages - Back Wages

Tutti Frutti Frozen Yogurt to Pay Damages – Back Wages

Massachusetts, NH—Tutti Frutti Frozen Yogurt Business Pays $10K in Punitive Damages and $1,978 in Back Pay to Employees Who Asserted Their Rights to Tips.

Tutti Frutti franchisee also pays nearly $13K to 19 employees for tip violations.

BOSTON, MA (STL.News) When the owner of three Tutti Frutti Frozen Yogurt shops in Massachusetts and New Hampshire terminated an employee who asserted their rights to the tips they had earned, the company violated anti-retaliation provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act and found themselves facing costly consequences after a U.S. Department of Labor investigation.

The department’s Wage and Hour Division found that the employer failed to keep complete tip records and admitted that they kept a portion of employees’ tips and used the tips for business expenses.  The FLSA prohibits owners and managers from participating in tip pools and keeping any portion of an employee’s tips for any purpose.

In an administrative settlement with the division, TF Holyoke LLC, doing business as Tutti Frutti in Hadley and Holyoke, Massachusetts, and Newington, New Hampshire, has paid $6,438 in back wages and an equal amount in liquidated damages to 19 employees at the Holyoke location.  The settlement also requires Tutti Frutti to pay the unlawfully terminated employee $10,000 in punitive damages and $1,978 in back pay for the period during which the employee was looking for a new job after the retaliatory discharge.  The department also assessed $1,064 in civil money penalties against the employer for the tip violations.

“Retaliation against an employee who asserts their Fair Labor Standards Act rights is against the law, and the Wage and Hour Division will pursue appropriate remedies for employees,” said Wage and Hour Division District Director Carlos Matos in Boston.  “In this case, an employee received $10,000 in punitive damages for being terminated after inquiring about how and when tips would be distributed.  This employer paid $24,854 for tip and anti-retaliation violations of the FLSA.”



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