New Trump rule could cost waiters more than $700 million in lost wages, allowing employers to take more of their tips to pay other workers

 New Trump rule could cost waiters more than $700 million in lost wages, allowing employers to take more of their tips to pay other workers

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A new Trump administration rule could cost tipped employees more than $700 million in lost wages each year. Joe Raedle/Getty Images
  • A new rule published by the Department of Labor on Tuesday would allow restaurant owners to take employees’ tips to pay “back-of-the-house” workers, such as cooks and dishwashers.

  • An analysis by the Economic Policy Institute found that change could cost workers more than $700 million in lost wages.

  • The regulation also allows employers to required tipped employees to perform more “non-tipped” labor, such as cleaning.

  • “It’s really, really clear this is about the interests of corporate executives and shareholders,” Heidi Shierholz, an economist at EPI, told Business Insider.

  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

A new regulation rolled out in the final days of the Trump administration will allow restaurants to pull tips from their waitstaff to pay cooks in the back, putting more cash in the pockets of ownership while forcing front-of-the-house staff to do more work for less money.

Employers, to this point, have been allowed to pool tips and share them among employees who typically receive them; for example, servers giving a share of their earnings to hosts and bussers. The 148-page regulation put out Tuesday by the Department of Labor would expand that, allowing restaurants to pay the wages of prep cooks and dishwashers with money earned by those waiting tables.

The rule also does away with a so-called “80/20” rule: previously, tipped employees – who can earn as little as $2.13 an hour in wages from their employer – could not be a

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Redak staff

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