Issues over tipping, specifically how tips are shared among restaurant workers, continue to trip up restaurateurs and land them in court.
Safran Turney Hospitality has agreed to pay $252,500 to settle a class-action lawsuit filed last year on behalf of 52 waiters at their Center City restaurants Barbuzzo, Jamonera, Little Nonna’s, and Lolita, who allege that the company unfairly took a portion of tips.
Safran Turney, whose representative declined to comment, said in court papers that the suit, filed by R. Andrew Santillo of the Dresher law firm Winebrake & Santillo, lacked merit. The settlement is awaiting final approval at a July 23 hearing before U.S. District Judge Chad F. Kenney.
The lead plaintiff, Sarah Smith-Centz, who left Barbuzzo in 2018, alleges that from Sept. 19, 2015, to Aug. 28, 2017, she gave $10 to $20 per shift to managers and, on certain shifts, paid $10 to $20 to silverware polishers.
Under the settlement, $162,500 will be distributed among servers, receiving an amount based on the number of hours worked and the amount of shared tips — or about $3.95 for every hour. According to a breakdown submitted to the court, each server will receive $92 to $8,830.