Legal Sea Foods restaurants sued by workers who say they were forced to share their tips

Government And Institutions Associated Press

Boston-based Legal Sea Foods is facing two lawsuits alleging the restaurant chain violated state laws by forcing servers and bartenders to share tips with workers who rolled silverware in napkins.

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Under state law, only those who serve food or beverages directly to patrons, or clear their tables, are entitled to gratuities. The lawsuits allege that by requiring the wait staff to share tips with workers whose only duties were rolling silverware Legal violated the tips law and therefore owes servers and bartenders the regular minimum wage of $8 an hour.

The lawsuits were filed on behalf of more than 200 servers and bartenders at restaurants in the Prudential Center and Burlington Mall.

Legal chief executive Roger Berkowitz told The Boston Globe (http://bit.ly/1vYlxLI ) the "lawsuits are ludicrous and we will vigorously defend."

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Information from: The Boston Globe, http://www.bostonglobe.com