Doherty Publishes Low Pay Commissions Review of Current Practices in Relation to Tips and Gratuities

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Doherty Publishes Low Pay Commission’s Review of Current Practices in Relation to Tips and Gratuities
Thursday 28 February 2019
The Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection, Regina Doherty TD today published the Low Pay Commission’s Review of Current Practices in Relation to Tips and Gratuities. Having reviewed the issue, the Commission is of the view that legislation is not necessarily the best way forward in this matter.  The Commission emphasise that there could be administrative and compliance costs involved and, indeed, other “unintended negative consequences such as the reclassification of service charges, leading to a potential reduction in the take-home pay of low-paid employees.”
Speaking today, Minister Doherty said:
“I would like to thank the Low Pay Commission for their important input to this debate. It is clear that this is an incredibly complex area and that there are no easy answers. I believe that this report should frame the debate on this issue going forward.  I am reviewing all options for solutions in this area in the light of this report which has brought a firmer factual basis to the current debate.”
Dr Donal de Buitléir, Chairman of the Low Pay Commission, also welcomed the publication of the report and hoped it would bring some clarity to the debate on tipping practices.  He said:
“While there was comparatively little official data available in Ireland in this area, the Commission did consult with relevant sectors and interest groups.  Overall, we considered that there is insufficient reliable data to conclude that the issue of employers withholding tips is a significant problem in Ireland.  Furthermore, we had concerns that any benefits would not necessarily be justified by the administrative and compliance costs, and quite significant concerns as to the enforceability of legislation with regard to matters which are not statutory rights, given the informal nature of tips and gratuities. 
I do hope, however, that our work on this report will assist in people’s consideration of this matter, in particular in the context of any potential legislation and its impacts.”
Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection
Last modified:28/02/2019