New fines announced to protect employees tips

Tips jar

by HRHQ Editorial Team

Minister of State for Business, Employment and Retail, Neale Richmond, has announced the introduction of new on the spot fines for businesses found breaching rules surrounding tips as outlined in the Payment of Wages (Amendment) (Tips and Gratuities) Act 2022.

Main provisions:

  • employers who do not provide employees with their terms of employment or provide false information will receive a fine of €1,500
  • employers who do not provide employees with a written statement on the distribution of tips and gratuities, or fails to treat a service charge as a tip, will be subject to a fine of €750
  • if employers do not display a ‘tips and gratuities notice’ or a ‘contract Workers Tips and Gratuities Notice’, they will be fined €500

Minister Richmond said:

“Tips are an important aspect of the hospitality industry, something we are especially reminded of after a very busy Christmas period. Protections of tips introduced last year ensure that those who earn the tips are the ones to benefit from them.

“While the majority of employers are in compliance with rules and regulations surrounding the treatment of tips, the introduction of these fines provides another layer of protection for hospitality workers and will help to stamp out bad practices where they exist.

“We believe in putting money back into people’s pockets, this includes allowing workers to keep their hard-earned tips. Not only do the workers deserve to keep the tips they earn, but customers who are paying these tips deserve to know where their money is going.”

Inspectors from the Workplace Relations Commission will continue to visit premises around the country to see if they are in line with the legislation on tips, and if they find a breach, they can issue a fine.

To encourage employers to work with the legislation, if the fine is paid, no further action will be taken. Where the fine is not paid, they will be referred to the WRC’s internal legal affairs committee who will then decide whether to proceed with prosecution.

The Payment of Wages (Amendment) (Tips and Gratuities) Act 2022 came into effect on 1 December 2022 and requires a review of the legislation after it has been in effect for one year.

Preparatory work on the review is underway within the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment which will then inform the effectiveness of the measures and whether further measures are warranted.