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College Pays $86K to Settle Withheld Gratuity Lawsuit

Workers at Williams College allege that the school collected a 15% gratuity at functions that it withheld despite telling patrons it would be distributed to workers.

Williams College will pay $86,000 into a fund for distribution to 58 current and former employees of its catering and dining services departments as reimbursement for tips that were allegedly withheld by the college, reports the Berkshire Eagle. The payment, made per a settlement of a class action lawsuit in Berkshire Superior Court, compensates employees who worked on functions or events between December 2009 and October 2012 where a mandatory 15% service charge was collected by the college but not distributed to the workers even though patrons paying the extra charge were allegedly told the money would be given to workers as a gratuity.

Under the terms of the settlement, Williams College "denies any liability or wrongdoing of any kind and asserts that its pay practices complied with legal requirements." The college also maintained that it paid all legally required gratuities to the employees.

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