Coffee Shop Chain Fined $47,000 for Child Labor Violations

Businesses must comply with laws designed to keep minors safe and protect them from unfair working conditions. A Massachusetts court recently fined a coffee shop chain $47,000 for violating child labor, wage and hour laws. The ruling, which includes $15,000 in restitution and $32,000 in penalties, shows how the legal system can come to the aid of underage employees who suffer mistreatment.

“Our child labor laws are designed to protect minors by limiting the hours and times they can work. We want to make sure that this business provides its staff with better working conditions and does not interfere with the earnings that they depend on,” said Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey.

Alleged labor law violations against the shops and their owners in Leominster and Littleton, MA included the following:

•    Scheduling employees under 18 to work after 8 p.m. without adult supervision
•    Scheduling an employee to work prior to 6 a.m.
•    Retaining $15,000 in tips

Child labor laws forbid management and non-service employees to share and receive tips. An audit revealed the employees failed to receive all tips due them. Allegedly, the owner, managers and supervisors of the donut shops improperly collected money from a tip pool.

Child labor laws offer comprehensive protection to young people in the workplace, and businesses that violate them can face severe penalties. If you believe your employer has violated your rights, the effective and highly reputable attorneys at Joseph and Kirschenbaum LLP can help you explore courses of action. Call us today at 1 (212) 688-5640, or email us at to schedule a free intake evaluation.

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