Ontario moves to protect employees' tips

As of June 10, it is illegal for employers to take a share

The Ontario government is making it easier for employees to hold on to their tips.

Starting tomorrow, except in limited circumstances, employers taking a share of tips and other gratuities or making deductions for things like spillage, breakage, losses or damage will be illegal.

These rules affect employers and employees working at bars, restaurants, hair and nail salons, catering firms and taxis or other workplaces where employees receive tips and are covered by the Employment Standards Act, 2000.

Exemptions from the new rules include when the employer practices "tip pooling" — collecting and redistributing the money among some or all employees — or if a statute or a court order authorizes it.

Another circumstance is business owners who regularly spend most of their time doing the same work as those who would normally receive tips, such as cleaning and serving food. 

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