Caterer claims he lost job after complaining about unfair distribution of tips

Kelly Holleran Apr. 4, 2012, 2:43am


A St. Clair County man has filed suit against his former employer, alleging he lost his job as a caterer after complaining that he was not receiving a fair portion of tips.

Stanislaw Bialas alleges he was working for defendant Alliance Hospitality Management when he confronted his manager, Reggie Simuel, on Jan. 26, 2011, about receiving an unfair division of tips after he performed banquet functions. Instead of dividing the tips evenly between employees, Simuel "misappropriated funds for his own use," according to the complaint filed March 19 in St. Clair County Circuit Court.

Bialas also had a conference with Simuel's supervisor to relate the unequal distribution of tips and to complain about under-reporting of liquor and food sales by his co-workers, the suit states.

"In retaliation of the same, Reggie Simuel, acting as and for the Defendant and in the scope and course of his employment with Defendant, reduced the hours of work scheduled for the Plaintiff which caused the Plaintiff to lose income," the complaint says.

In May of 2011, Bialas received a five-day suspension and was terminated on May 20, 2011, for an alleged violation of standards conduct, according to the complaint. However, Bialas contends he actually lost his job because he reported his fellow employees' alleged misconduct.

Because of his termination, Bialas suffered great mental anguish, distress and tension; has lost his ability to comfortably sleep; and has lost his ability to concentrate on the more enjoyable aspects of life, the suit states. He has also lost earnings and suffered humiliation and embarrassment, the complaint says.

In his two-count complaint, Bialas is seeking a judgment of more than $100,000, plus punitive damages and other relief the court deems just.

Stanley M. Brandmeyer of Brandmeyer Law Offices in New Baden will be representing him.

St. Clair County Circuit Court case number: 12-L-144.

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