A former waitress at Hickory Tavern is suing the Charlotte-based restaurant, which has a location on Hilton Head Island, to reclaim wages that she says employees were cheated out of while performing side work for the company, according to a story in The Charlotte Observer.
Vanessa Chavez, a 27-year-old experienced server, worked at a Hickory Tavern in Winston-Salem and noticed she was not paid minimum wage — $7.25 per hour — after providing non-tipped work such as rolling silverware, cleaning and stocking. According to the Labor Department, restaurants can pay servers $2.13 an hour if earning tips is available but must also provide minimum wage if more than 20 percent of their time worked is dedicated to non-tipped tasks.
The suit is a collective action, so other current and former employees of Hickory Tavern can join it.
The Hickory Tavern on Hilton Head opened in March, replacing a Fuddruckers on Shelter Cove Lane. A Hickory Tavern marketing officer described the chain as a “neighborhood restaurant with sports passion,” with a diverse menu and more than 100 beers offered.
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