Recent high-profile Fair Labor Standards Act cases involving restaurants that employ delivery drivers highlight the importance of using proper employee tracking software to accurately record hours worked and provide correct payments.
Legal news source Law 360 points out that using such hour and payment tracking programs are one part of an overall strategy necessary to reduce legal liability and enhance compliance with the FLSA. Employers should also have consistent and enforceable strategies for clocking in and out, which can normalize the length of shifts and support recordkeeping efforts.
Businesses should avoid pooling tips from delivery drivers - as well as servers and bartenders - and sharing them with staff who don't customarily earn tips, like cooks and dishwashers. Improper distribution of gratuities is specifically cited in the FLSA as a violation of the law.
Businesses that operate as part of a franchise agreement also need to be careful, according to Law 360. The parent companies should be careful about being directly involved in training efforts because of possible liability issues. Workers may be able to claim wage and hour violations against both their direct employer and the franchisor.
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