What the act says

Minimum wage rate

The minimum wage rate for employees receiving tips has been $8.75 an hour since May 1, 2013.

From May 1st, 2014, the minimum wage rate for employees receiving tips has been $8.90 an hour.

Employees receiving tips

An employee receiving tips generally receives tips or gratuities and works:

  • in a restaurant, except for fast food establishments
  • for an enterprise that sells, delivers or serves meals for consumption outside the establishment
  • on premises where alcoholic beverages are sold for consumption on site
  • in an establishment that offers in return for remuneration accommodations for tourists, including a camping establishment.

Tips

Tips are made up of the sums that customers voluntarily give to the employee and service charges added to the customer’s bill. Tips that are paid directly or indirectly by a customer belong entirely to the employee who provided the service. Tips must not be confused with the wages that are otherwise owing to the employee.

An employer who collects tips must remit them in full to the employee who provided the service. Tips include service charges added to the customer’s bill, but do not include the administration charges added to the bill.

The employer must always pay the employee, in addition to the tips, at least the minimum wage.

Tip-sharing arrangement

An employee receiving tips has the right to participate in a tip-sharing arrangement. This arrangement, whether verbal or in writing, must result from the free and voluntary consent of the employees who are entitled to the tips.

The employer cannot impose such an arrangement on employees or intervene in the reaching of such an arrangement.
Employees who participate in a tip-sharing arrangement may ask their employer to manage the application of the arrangement and to distribute the tips among all of the participants.

An employee hired in an establishment where a tip-sharing arrangement already exists is required to take part in this arrangement.

The Commission des normes du travail will not be able to claim sums that were not remitted under a tip-sharing arrangement for an employee who has withdrawn from such an arrangement. The Commission is not empowered to take legal action against an employee who does not meet his obligations towards the other employees bound by the tip-sharing arrangement.

Fees associated with the use of a credit card

An employer cannot require that an employee receiving tips pay the fees associated with the use of a credit card.

Special clothing

An employee cannot receive less than the minimum rate because the expenses for the purchase, use or upkeep of special clothing used for his work have been deducted from his wages. In all cases, an employer who requires the wearing of special clothing must provide this clothing free of charge to an employee paid at the minimum wage. An employer who requires that his employees wear special clothing that identifies them as employees of his undertaking (example: jacket with a logo) must provide it free of charge to all employees.


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In the case of an employee receiving tips, his wages must be increased by the reported tips for the calculation of the minimum wage established by this standard.

Example

An employee receiving tips paid at the minimum wage who worked 40 hours and received $120 in tips for a given week receives an hourly wage of $11.00 for that week. As a result, the employer cannot deduct from this employee’s wages more than $3.00 an hour for special clothing.

Differences in conditions of employment

An employer cannot give an employee who is subject to the Act respecting labour standards conditions of employment that are less advantageous than those of other employees doing the same work in the same establishment due to his hiring date.

These conditions of employment notably deal with:

  • wages
  • length of work
  • paid statutory holidays
  • annual vacation
  • rest periods
  • absences and leaves for family or parental reasons
  • notice of termination of employment.

To learn more, consult section Differences in conditions of employment.

 

How to calculate the indemnity

The Commission des normes du travail puts at your disposal calculation tools which help establish the amounts to which an employee is entitled.

For employees receiving tips, tips and gratuities must be included in the calculation.

Calculation tools for the indemnity for an:

Frequently asked question

  1. Can an employer keep a percentage of his employees’ tips?
    No. These amounts belong exclusively to the employee who served the customers. When it is the employer who collects the tips, he is required to remit them in full to the employee assigned to serving the customers. He cannot decide to keep a portion or remit the portion, in whole or in part, to other employees not assigned to serving the customers.

Gouvernement du Québec

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