Server Says She Was Fired After Management Tried To Pocket $4,400 Tip

Even if we weren't aware that servers are legally allowed to be paid under minimum wage due to the expectation of tips, we've long understood that the service industry essentially runs on them.

And while that certainly makes things complicated for wait staff, certain restaurant owners are compacting this problem by exploiting the way that tipping culture has evolved over the years. Some servers have reported having to split their tips with not only other servers, but most of the restaurant's staff due to their management's policies.

And if that weren't enough, the people behind those rare instances where someone leaves a staggeringly generous tip will sometimes discover that the person they intended to earmark this money towards didn't get as much of it as they thought.

But while this bait-and-switch is the fastest way to anger your customers, one server is now alleging that her former workplace took that greed a step further.

On December 3, real estate company owner Grant Wise and 39 others gathered at the Oven and Tap restaurant in Bentonville, Arkansas for a special $100 dinner club.

As Wise explained in a Facebook post, this meant that the diners in this group pledged to contribute a tip of $100 each for the waitresses who served them.

According to Fox 8, this totalled up to a $4,400 tip that was split down the middle between one server named Ryan Brandt and her coworker who went home sick that night.

And it was clear from Brandt's emotional reaction captured in Wise's post that this money meant a lot to her.

As Wise put it, "It was an incredible thing to do and to see her reaction was awesome, to see what that meant to her, the impact that it’s had on her life already."

But while Wise had called ahead to confirm that servers receive all of the tips diners leave behind, Brandt would later say that the large amount led management to change this policy on the fly.

In her words, "I was told that I was going to be giving my cash over to my shift manager, and I would be taking home 20%."

According to her, there had never been a tip-splitting policy like this in the three-and-a-half years she had worked there.

When Wise caught wind of this, he asked the restaurant to return his group's tip so he could directly give it to the people it was meant for.

And Fox 8 reported that a representative from Oven and Tap claimed to KNWA that they fully honored his request.

But Brandt said that finally getting the full tip she had earned came at the price of her job.

And she said that the reason for her dismissal was the fact that she told Wise about what her managers intended to do with her tip.

As she put it, "It was devastating, I borrowed a significant amount for student loans. Most of them were turned off because of the pandemic but they’re turning back on in January and that’s a harsh reality."

Wise has since stated a GoFundMe campaign for Brandt that has amassed $3,220 at the time of this writing. He has also stated that Brandt has since found a job at another restaurant.

h/t: Fox 8

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