Wynn To Pay $5.6M In Unpaid Dealer Tips
Wynn Resorts has finally agreed to end the protracted legal feud with around 1,000 current as well as former dealers at its Las Vegas properties. The feud, which revolved around the supposed non-payment of tips, has been ongoing for the past 15 years, moving unresolved from courtroom to courtroom.
Wynn on Friday agreed to a settlement that will see the casino giant part with $5.6 million to be paid in unsettled tips to disgruntled dealers. The settlement was eventually reached with the help and guidance of a mediator before it was made an order of the court by US District Judge Andrew Gordon.
Wynn’s A Cry In The Wilderness
The disgruntled dealers had based their argument of having been conned out of a large portion of their tips on then chairman and CEO Steve Wynn’s 2006 decision to – without fair warning – implement a controversial new policy that would include team leaders in on the distribution of the tip pool.
Wynn had in turn based his own decision on the merging of floor supervisors and pit bosses into a single management role – a decision he feared might end in disaster due to the fact that team leaders oftentimes ended up with less money in the bank because of tips paid to dealers by customers.
Dealers had however at the time argued that instead of including casino service team leads in general tip distribution, Wynn should have increased their salaries. This would according to the disgruntled employees have been a much more reasonable approach than messing about with the tips earned by dealers.
What had fuelled the fire of controversy even more was that Wynn Resorts was at the time of the implementation of the controversial new rule, the only Las Vegas operator sharing tip pools with non-tipped employees.
The Final Approach
The dealers initially sought to recover as much as $50 million in unpaid tips from Wynn. Their case was however in 2011 revised in a federal court – this after the Obama administration had earlier that year passed new legislation prohibiting the sharing of tips with non-tipped employee’s illegal.
This resulted in the case being tossed again, prompting the dealers to approach the US Court of Appeals, where they eventually emerged successful in their plight for a recoup.
The recent settlement includes outstanding tips, attorney fees, and general legal costs. Attorney fees are said to have accumulated to a whopping $1.4 million over the course of the protracted years-long legal proceedings.