Restaurant Law News

‘Seinfeld’ Diner Sued for Not Being Handicap-Friendly
A wheelchair bound woman has brought suit against Tom's Restaurant claiming that it is not handicap accessible in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Should Restaurants Be Allowed to Add Gratuity?
A recent dispute over automatic gratuities at New York City restaurants has been dismissed by a U.S. District Court judge.

For New York Outdoor Cafes, Getting a License Is No Breeze
Sidewalk cafes are becoming increasingly popular. But, restaurants in NYC have to jump through a lot of hoops to obtain a license to serve customers outside.

New York Restaurant's Picasso Painting Dispute Not Over Yet
A dispute between the landlord of New York City's Four Seasons Restaurant and the owner of a fragile Picasso painting that covers a restaurant wall went before a state court judge April 1. The two are arguing over whether or not the painting can be removed from the limestone wall on which it hangs, as the wall been damaged by moisture and steam from the kitchens on the other side.

Unlimited Booze With Brunch is Illegal
Brunch lovers in New York may not be aware that one of their favorite past times is actually illegal: "bottomless brunch." Fixed price restaurant and bar deals including an unlimited number of drinks are unlawful, and apparently, always have been. Although it seems the appropriate enforcers haven't cracked down on this practice yet, they might start at any time.

IRS Tipping Crackdown Impacts Restaurants, Servers
The IRS is cracking down on how restaurant owners pay out automatic tips – i.e. the typical 18% charged for parties of 6 or more. Going forward, these tips must be classified as service charges that are taxable as regular wages and subject to payroll tax withholding (aka more paperwork), rather than pooled into the tip cash servers divide at the end of their shift (which has been common practice until now).

Proposals to Ban Polystyrene Foam Containers and Set New Requirements...
There were two new laws passed by the New York City Council to lower food waste of food providing businesses. One was the ban of Poystrene Foam containers and the other was a new requirement to separate wastes between composting and landfill/incinerator facilities

Victimized Twice
Restaurant workers and waiters/waitresses are blamed for when guest walk out with our paying the bill. Is this an ethical practice?

NYPD Urges Bar Owners to Ban Drunk Santas
From Eater NY Earlier this month, the NYPD sent letters to over 30 bar and restaurant owners in Midtown and Hell's Kitchen urging them not to welcome the costumed revelers of Santacon on December 14. The letter notes: The number of participants has grown large enough to completely overwhelm the sidewalks and public spaces...Having thousands of intoxicated partygoers roam the streets urinating, littering, vomiting and vandalizing will not be tolerated in our neighborhood...It is my recommendation that you do not sponsor this event in any way. Lieutenant John Cocchi tells DNAinfo that many of the bar owners have already agreed to comply. If you own a bar or restaurant and want to take a similar stance against Santacon, consider downloading and printing out one of Eater's "No Drunk Santas" signs from last year. It works like a charm, and it's totally free.

NYC Restaurant Criticized for Imposing Mandatory Gratuitity
Sea food restaurant in Harlem criticized for requiring minimum 18% tips. Restaurant claims that the tip amount is only a suggestion, but the receipts do not provide any means or information about modifying the "suggested" tip amount.

Man Fakes Restaurant Grade Posts
A restaurant consultant has been caught creating, and handing out fake A grades to NYC eateries. Nine restaurants have been identified as using the fake grade posts. The restaurants believed they were paying for the defense of their cases and thought their grade was raised. The restaurant consultant has been arrested for fraud.

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