Illinois officials say new law guarantees tips are the property of employees who earned them

(Photo: Pixabay)(MGN)

(KWQC) - Recent legislation signed by Illinois Governor JB Pritzker makes an existing state law "crystal clear" - employees own their tips.

In a press release on Monday, Illinois officials said the law, which took effect at the start of 2020, amends the Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act.

The law states that tips are the property of the employees who earned them, and employers cannot retain them.

“People in the various service industries work hard for their money and in many cases, such as for restaurant servers, tips make up an important part of the overall compensation,” said Michael Kleinik, Director of the Illinois Department of Labor. “This law leaves no doubt that gratuities belong to the workers who earned them.”

The law requires tips to be paid to employees within 13 days after the end of the day period during which the tips were earned.

Employers are required to pay tipped workers a minimum of 60 percent of the state's minimum wage, which rose to $9.25 an hour on January 1, and the tips and wage combined must equal at least the minimum wage.

Officials say the law doesn't prohibit a tip-pooling arrangement among employees are permitted by law.

Workers or employers who have questions regarding the Illinois Wage Payment and Collection Act can call the Illinois Department of Labor at 312-793-2800 or email DOL.Questions@Illinois.gov.