Le Cirque Slapped with Wage Violations Lawsuit

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It’s a sad day for one of New York’s most beloved institutions.

Sirio Maccioni’s famous restaurant, Le Cirque, has been hit with a class-action lawsuit from current and former restaurant employees for wage violations, including paying employees under minimum wage, not providing overtime compensation, and forcing employees to share tips with other workers who are not eligible to receive tips.

Plaintiff lawyer Maimon Kirschenbaum is litigating the suit, and is notorious in the restaurant industry for filing (and oftentimes winning) cases against chefs and restaurants for labor violations. Some of his famous winning cases include lawsuits against Mario Batali, Joe Bastianich, Le Bernardin, and Nobu. He’s been called a “scourge of restaurateurs.”

In this particular case, Le Cirque’s complainants, particularly the representative plaintiff, server Elvis Pena, are asking for compensation for the wages unpaid, as well as alleged overtime worked at the restaurant that was well beyond the normal 40-hour workweek.

We have reached out to the Maccioni Restaurant Group for comment, but have not yet received an answer.

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Joanna Fantozzi is an Associate Editor with The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter@JoannaFantozzi