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Restaurant's 'Unfair' Policy On Credit Card Fees On Tips Draws Flak From Netizens

An attorney took to social media to vent her frustration about a company's unfair tipping policy affecting workers.
Cover Image Source: @lawyerpaige | TikTok
Cover Image Source: @lawyerpaige | TikTok

Attorney Paige Sparks, known as @lawyerpaige on TikTok, started a conversation about tipping and business ethics in a video that went viral, gathering over 250,000 views. In the video, she talks about Twin Peaks, a restaurant chain she compares to Hooters. Expressing disappointment, she explains their tipping policy saying that waitresses have to pay the fees when customers tip with credit cards. This matter has sparked dialogue in the TikTok community, highlighting the growing rate of out-of-control tipping policies in recent times.

Image Source: lawyerpaige | TikTok
Image Source: @lawyerpaige | TikTok

Sparks talks about a specific Twin Peaks restaurant in Kansas City, owned by 3B Lodge, that's under scrutiny for making waitstaff cover credit card fees on their tips. According to the TikToker, this policy raises legal and ethical concerns, depending on how it's executed and where the money comes from.

She expresses doubts about the restaurant's motives, given her ongoing lawsuit against them, suggesting they may prioritize doing what they want without considering the consequences.

She then explains the financial impact on staff using a hypothetical example: if a waitress receives a $20 tip on a $100 bill paid by credit card, she'd have to pay Twin Peaks 50 cents for processing the tip. The TikToker finds it unfair to pass these costs onto employees who often earn minimum wage.


Sparks also warns about potential legal issues with this policy, suggesting it could lead to lawsuits for wage theft if not implemented correctly. She mentions the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), which allows employers to deduct credit card fees from tips but requires them to ensure employees still receive at least minimum wage. Some states, however, have stricter rules about this deduction.

Although she acknowledges the legal possibility of deducting credit card fees from tips under the FLSA, she criticizes the practice for its negative impact on staff morale. She emphasizes the need for employers to follow strict guidelines to avoid breaking the law or state regulations.

Image Source: lawyerpaige | TikTok
Image Source: @lawyerpaige | TikTok

Sparks ends her critique by questioning the Twin Peaks' policy, urging viewers to think about the consequences of supporting businesses that burden their staff in this way. She uses humor to state her point, suggesting that the company's policy is akin to mistreatment despite the play on words with "just the tip."

Commenters on the video resonated with the TikToker's sentiments, echoing her concerns regarding the fairness of restaurants not paying their employees a livable wage while also requiring servers to pay to work there.

Moreover, Sparks directly addressed Twin Peaks employees who expressed disagreement with her message, urging them to channel their frustrations toward the management of the company rather than engaging in arguments within the comments section. 

Image Source: lawyerpaige | TikTok
Image Source: @lawyerpaige | TikTok

Sparks' video initiated a thought-provoking dialogue surrounding tipping culture and the ethical obligations of businesses towards their workforce. With a tipping culture that's already going out of control, Sparks invites viewers to critically examine the societal norms surrounding tipping and its impact on consumers and workers alike.