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Does Ohio allow tip pooling? 

| May 25, 2020 | Employment Law |

Workers in Ohio, as in other states, often get tips when they work in service industries. This could include bartenders, waitstaff and the like. However, different states have different rules on how these tips can be handled, so it’s important to look into them a bit deeper. 

For instance, you should know that Ohio does allow tip pooling. It can only apply to workers who normally get tips and the money has to get divided among those who also generally get tips. This means, for instance, that management cannot set up a tip pool as an excuse to take a portion of the tips for themselves. 

How does a pool work? Generally, it just means that workers do not keep the specific tips that they earn. Instead, they put all tips into the same general fund. At the end of a shift, all workers who contributed then take an equal share. 

This is common at bars and breweries, for instance, so that all of the waitstaff can help out at all of the tables. The goal is to provide better service for customers. If any waiter or waitress sees that someone needs another drink, they can grab it for them, rather than having certain servers for certain tables. Workers do not care who they serve, specifically, because they know they’re going to get a portion of the tips from all areas. 

Tip pooling situations can get complex, though, especially if workers feel like what they receive is not fair or that wage theft is actively occurring, and that’s when they must know what legal options they have