Restaurant, cafe and pub owners set to be banned from keeping tips left for staff by customers

It is claimed that the new plans could help around two million people in the hospitality industry

The owners of restaurants, cafes and pubs will be banned from keeping tips left for their staff under new government plans.

The move to make it illegal for hospitality firms to withhold tips from workers could help around two million people in the industry, the Department for Business claims.

Sign up to our NationalWorld Today newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

We want to hear from you: let us know what you think about this story and be part of the debate in our comments section below

At a glance: 5 key points

  • Bosses could be taken to an employment tribunal if they break the new rules, meaning they may be forced to compensate workers or face fines.
  • The new law, which is expected to come into force within the next year, comes after several High Street chains were accused of keeping tips or charging a percentage for "administrative costs".
  • Research suggests that most tips are now paid by card in the UK - and not cash. This means that businesses who receive tips by card currently have the choice whether to keep it or give the money to workers. Cash tips are legally the property of staff.
  • The new law will also introduce a code of practice which will set out how tips should be distributed, as well as requiring employers to pass on all tips, service charges and gratuities without any deductions.
  • Employees will also get the right to request information on their boss’s tipping record.

What’s been said

"Unfortunately, some companies choose to withhold cash from hardworking staff who have been tipped by customers as a reward for good service.

"Our plans will make this illegal and ensure tips will go to those who worked for it".

Paul Scully, Labour Markets Minister

"If this work is to be truly valued we need to see more people lifted onto a real Living Wage.

"To build a stronger and more dynamic economy, our focus should be on increasing the number of businesses doing the right thing and committing to pay a Living Wage".

Graham Griffiths, Living Wage Foundation interim director talking to the BBC

A message from the editor:

Thank you for reading. NationalWorld is a new national news brand, produced by a team of journalists, editors, video producers and designers who live and work across the UK. Find out more about who’s who in the team, and our editorial values. We want to start a community among our readers, so please follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and keep the conversation going.