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Aug 15, 2009 10:55 PM

How would you tip? (moved from Boston board)

How would you tip at a restaurant knowing that the house keeps all the tips? An acquaintance of mine who works for a Boston area pho place said her owner pays her and all the waiters ~$100 bucks a day and in return keep all the tips. Is this a fair and legal deal for everyone?

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  1. from my understanding of MA tip wage law, the aforementioned practice is illegal. While managers are allowed to require tip pooling, but they are not allowed to keep ANY of the money. Here's the law; Maybe encourage your friend to call the Atty Gen about it. (617) 727-3465.

    So, it sounds shady all around. As for tipping, I would worry that if I tipped light on the house bill, but handed her some extra $, the boss would become suspicious.

    1. It is EXTREMELY illegal in Massachusetts and many restaurants have been busted for this. It's an open invitation to prosecution. They will probably need to account for their theft and settle up if they want to avoid prosecution.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Karl S

        This extremely popular pho places already got busted before and had paid heavy fines for other some wage-related violations. So how would you tip knowing the house get all the tips?

        1. re: joebloe

          If I "knew", I would not patronize the place to begin with.

      2. I'd find a new place to go - if I know the place is operating illegally, I would rather not support it.

        1. Legal issues aside, I would slip a couple of dollars (whatever the appropriate % of the bill), and then leave nothing as the formal "house tip".

          1. I wouldn't tip at all.