A federal judge has awarded nearly $1 million to lawyers who successfully challenged the withholding of tips from waiters, busboys and captains at the 88 Palace Restaurant in Manhattan’s Chinatown.
Although the fee award under the Fair Labor Standards Act and the New York Labor Law exceeded the amount of damages in the case, Southern District of New York Judge Gerard Lynch said the fees sought by lawyers with Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom and the Urban Justice Center were “presumptively reasonable” given the complexity and difficulty of the case, and even taking into account that the lawyers initially represented the restaurant workers pro bono.
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