5 Facts About Stripper Minimum Pay Wage Laws
The adult entertainment industry is a behemoth. And just like employers in other corporate environments and industries, strip club owners have been accused of treating their employees unfairly.
Like other service industry jobs – such as servers and bartenders in a restaurant or the vast majority of hospitality workers in a hotel or resort – exotic dancers depend on tips for their salary. And just because they earn tips as the predominant form of their pay wages does not mean that strip club owners can violate federal and state law by not paying dancers what they deserve.
There have recently been efforts for exotic dancers who are employees of strip clubs to unionize in order to retain better protections of not only the federal and state law, but also adequate treatment while on the job. Many exotic dancers reported to have been fearful of unruly patrons.
While strip clubs may hold a business model that’s only appealing to a certain demographic, there are a few things to consider about the employees who work there.
1. Many Dancers Are NOT Paid by their Strip Club
No matter what a person does or where they work, that employee should be paid for their work. End of story. No dancers should be working exclusively for tips. In accordance with California laws, a company with a professional business model is one that at least pays its workers minimum wage, which works out to be $2.13, federally, for people who earn tips.
If a club does not pay its workers at least the federal minimum wage, the employers are breaking the law. Lawyers for Justice, PC helps employees in all industries fight against bully bosses to make sure they are paid what they are owed. The firm employs over 25 powerful attorneys who know the legal system inside and out and aren’t afraid to take on even the biggest corporations.
Strip club owners also could be misclassifying their dancers to avoid paying them adequate wages.
What does this mean?
Sometimes owners or managers will classify their workers as “independent contractors” or “salaried employees” so they don’t have to pay expensive overtime costs or adhere to meal break benefits. This completely takes advantage of women who work in many clubs and they should absolutely ask their employers if they are filed as an independent contractor or an hourly worker.
2. Some Exotic Dancers Are Fired For Holding Multiple Jobs
Whether it’s a part time gig or a full time job, women working at clubs depend on their earnings to make a living. And if they do not receive the amount of hours necessary to cover their monthly expenses, they will often turn to another club to make ends meet.
However, many clubs don’t let their dancers work in competing places of business. And if they do, they’ll be fired. In states like California, Texas, North Dakota, and Oklahoma, a “non-compete” clause or agreement is against the law. And while dancers cannot legally be stopped from seeking employment at another location, that doesn’t mean that they receive fair treatment. Which is why an employment law firm like Lawyers for Justice, PC can help them reclaim their rights.
3. Dancers Often Don’t Keep All Their Tips
Most dancers are required by their clubs to “tip out” or give a portion of their earnings to other employees at the club. They are often forced to tip out at least the bartenders and bouncers, which means their compensation is dramatically reduced.
While many clubs have different rules about tip out percentages, dancers do not get to keep all their pay from their shift. If their wages are low enough and they are not earning at least minimum wage, they may be able to seek legal action.
4. Some Dancers Must Pay to Perform
It’s common for strippers to have reserved stage time in a club, but many times that also means that they have to pay for that stage time. In essence, they have to pay money to secure the opportunity to make money, which could sometimes end up in a net loss.
However, as an employee, just like in any other industry, dancers should not pay to work; they should be paid to work.
5. Strippers Can Be Charged for Tardiness
While it’s frowned upon, it’s not uncommon for a worker to be late. And usually, unless its a repetitive behavior, it doesn’t often affect their compensation. Life happens: taking kids to school, the subway is delayed, roadside traffic – the list goes on. H0wever, a lot of adult dancers are charged for their tardiness, even if it’s no fault of their own.
Because many people find one’s employment at a strip club to be taboo, club owners capitalize on that stigma. It’s easier for them to take advantage of dancers because the industry isn’t as protected. It can can also make dancers less likely to fight for their rights because they’re worried about public perception.
But the employment attorneys at Lawyers for Justice, PC are respectful, discreet, and powerfully fight for clients, no matter the industry in which they work.
If any dancers feel their compensation is being taken away – either overtly or silently – Lawyers for Justice, PC can help. Best of all, the firm offers a FREE consultation to speak with a team member. We fight for our clients to ensure they are paid the money their boss owes to them.
Contact us by calling 818-647-9323 today.