Economist’s Advice for Waiters and Tipped Workers: Submit Unemployment Claims Now

By Stephania Jimenez

March 27, 2020

Waiters and waitresses are among the lowest-paid workers in the United States. And times are getting harder for them during the coronavirus pandemic.

“I’m concerned they may be hurting the most,” said Villanova Economics Professor David Fiorenza.

As businesses close as a result of the outbreak, more workers have filed unemployment claims. Pennsylvanians filed 650,000 unemployment claims over an 11-day period, state labor statistics released Thursday show.

Minimum-wage earners in Pennsylvania make $7.25 an hour. However, because servers also receive tips, employers can pay them a minimum of $2.83 an hour.

But tips are often paid in cash, and often waiters and waitresses don’t report that income on tax forms.

Read More