Restaurant Industry

News & Analysis as of

New York "Supersizes" the Minimum Wage for Certain Fast Food Employees

On September 10, 2015, the New York Department of Labor issued an order increasing the minimum wage for fast food employees at certain fast food chain restaurants in New York State to $15 per hour. This increase fixes the...more

Trade Secret Sauce: Trade Secrets, Not Copyright, Protect Chefs

While they say that a grand jury could “indict a ham sandwich,” the First Circuit recently reminded chefs that you can’t copyright a chicken sandwich. Specifically, a former employee of a Puerto Rican Church’s Chicken...more

ACA Menu Labeling Requirements: Draft FDA Guidance

The FDA’s 105-page final rule on chain restaurant nutrition labeling of menu items now has an associated, 53-page, draft guidance document, supplementing the FDA’s 132-page Food Labeling Guide, we learned from the September...more

Stores for Sale! Retailers and Restaurants Spin Off Real Estate

Several major retailers and restaurant chains have recently engaged in a variety of transactions to spin off their real estate and lease it back. Retailers and restaurants are suddenly doing them, or considering them, at an...more

Fifth Circuit Tips Its Hand as to Analysis of FLSA’s Tip Credit

Restaurants throughout the Fifth Circuit, and even beyond, should review the recent decision of Montano v. Montrose Restaurant, which discusses the often tricky and always fact-intensive question of whether a restaurant...more

Don’t Get Burned: Five Considerations When Leasing Restaurant Space in an Office Building

Leasing restaurant or café space in an office building requires certain considerations that a restaurant tenant may not encounter if it typically leases space in traditional retail settings. It is also important to realize...more

Achiote Restaurant Sued by EEOC for Sexual Harassment and Retaliation

Young, Male Mexican-American Workers Were Sexually Harassed by Restaurant Manager, Federal Agency Charges - SAN DIEGO, Calif. - A San Ysidro, Calif., restaurant which serves Mexican food just north of the U.S.-Mexico...more

August 2015 Independent Contractor Compliance and Misclassification News Update

August 2015 was not a vacation month for independent contractor cases. No less than seven major litigation events transpired this past month, highlighted by more of the same as well as some new developments. Several companies...more

Fifth Circuit Rules on Tip Pooling

In Montano v. Montrose Restaurant Associates, Inc., the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit was presented with what may seem like an easy issue:  does including a “coffeeman” in a tip pool invalidate the tip credit? ...more

Le Cirque to Pay Over a Million Dollars for Wage and Hour Violations

The tipping suits keep coming against upscale eateries in New York City, with Le Cirque being the latest to come under fire. In September, 2014, a lawsuit was filed, alleging that the restaurant violated the Fair Labor...more

Louisiana Federal Court Cautions Against Seeking Enforcement of Invalid Noncompete Agreements

In what should serve as a cautionary tale to employers with noncompete agreements, a federal court in the Eastern District of Louisiana allowed an unfair trade practices claim to survive against an employer that attempted to...more

Trademark Review | August 2015

The Redskins Lose Again (Off the Field)- A federal District Court affirmed the Trademark Trial and Appeal Board’s (TTAB) ruling that “Redskins” cannot be registered as a trademark for use in connection with a...more

Disability Access – Application of Disabled Persons Act and Unruh Act – Service Animals

Seth Flowers, et al. v. Brinda Prasad, et al. - California Court of Appeal, Second Appellate District (July 17, 2015) - The Unruh Civil Rights Act and Disabled Persons Act vary in their provisions. The Court of...more

[Webinar] How Will Browning-Ferris Change the Test for Joint-Employer Status for Union and Non-Union Employers? - August 31st,...

The NLRB is expected to release its long-anticipated decision in Browning-Ferris Industries of California, Inc. shortly, possibly today. This decision will likely mark a radical departure from the currently accepted standard...more

Washington Supreme Court Extends Minimum Wage

In a narrow 5-4 decision on August 20, 2015, the Washington Supreme Court reversed a lower court ruling and applied the City of SeaTac’s $15 minimum wage law to all workers at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport....more

Indiana Tax Court Serves a Sales Tax Exemption To Restaurant Chain for Electricity Used to Warm Food

Electricity used by Qdoba Mexican Restaurants to keep food warm before final preparation and sale was found exempt from sales tax by the Indiana Tax Court. On June 23, 2015, the Indiana Tax Court in Aztec Partners, LLC v....more

As MassPort Boss Reminds Us, Boston Wouldn't Be The Hub without Fishing, Seafood

Tom Glynn was careful to describe Boston’s hottest new neighborhood as the South Boston Waterfront in an op-ed piece he wrote for the Boston Globe the other day. You would expect nothing different from the CEO of the...more

Fourth Circuit Says Tip Pooling Rules Only Apply if Employer Claims Tip Credit

Restaurants and some other hospitality industry employers often take advantage of a sub-minimum wage applicable to employees who receive tips as part of their income. In recent years, a number of these employers have been the...more

Arsenic In Calif. Wine, But Is There A Problem?

A class action was filed in California Superior Court on March 19, 2015, Doris Charles et al. v. The Wine Group Inc. et al., case no. BC576061, that has raised a number of questions about the extent to which arsenic should be...more

Senate Majority Leader Introduces Bill That Would Dramatically Curtail New Jersey Employers’ Ability to Alter Work Schedules

On May 19, 2015, New Jersey Senate Majority Leader Loretta Weinberg introduced a bill (S2933) as part of a package of legislation seeking to dramatically regulate the scheduling and compensation of employees in New Jersey....more

Proposed Overtime Rules Could Significantly Impact Hospitality Businesses

The U.S. Department of Labor has proposed changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act’s (“FLSA”) overtime exemptions, and President Obama recently announced plans that will extend overtime under the FLSA for salaried “white...more

Nonresidential Leases: What Does It Take To Avoid Deemed Rejection?

In re Simbaki, Ltd., 520 B.R. 241 (Bankr. S.D. Tex. 2014) – A chapter 11 debtor sought to assume a restaurant lease.  The landlord objected, arguing among other things that the lease was not timely assumed and so was...more

NLRB Says Filing Class Action Lawsuit is Protected Concerted Activity

Section 7 of the National Labor Relations Act prohibits employers from discriminating or retaliating against employees who engage in protected concerted activity. Concerted Activity means actions involving terms and...more

U.S. Visa Categories Leave Entrepreneurs Few Options

Many of Julie Ferguson’s immigration law clients are entrepreneurs seeking to launch startups in the United States. They come from all over the world, but Ms. Ferguson, who practices in Miami, sees especially high numbers...more

Food and Beverage Alert (US)

This regular publication by DLA Piper lawyers focuses on helping clients navigate the ever-changing business, legal and regulatory landscape. Blue Bell resumes ice cream production in Alabama. The Alabama Department...more

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