Family Locked In By Restaurant After Refusing To Pay Tip

Categories: Really?!?!?
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Edwin Goei
We've all seen those mandatory gratuities of 17-20% that restaurants tack on the bill if your party gets to a certain size. But what if you decide that the service didn't warrant it?

CNN's Eatocracy reports that a family was locked in by a Houston, Texas restaurant after they refused to pay the mandatory gratuity citing poor service. The staff of La Fisherman barred the group from leaving until they paid. The restaurant eventually called the cops, but according to the article, "the police officer who was summoned was unable to give (the customer) a straight answer on the legality of the situation." The group eventually paid the tip "in order to avoid any further difficulty."

This kind of incident and the posts it inspires are always fodder for passionate discussion on the Internet food boards (the Eatocracy post has so far garnered a thousand comments since they broke the story on Thursday) and I expect this one to be no different. Comment away people! Comment away! What do you think?

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IRI33T
IRI33T

gratuity [grəˈtjuːɪtɪ]n pl -ties1. (Business / Commerce) a gift or reward, usually of money, for services rendered; tip2. something given without claim or obligation3. (Military) Military a financial award granted for long or meritorious serviceOHhh I wished it would have been me...... The police officer in the case was unsure about the law of mandatory gratuity, but, he IS fully aware and sure of the law that disallows a person from unlawfully detaining another. Which I WOULD HAVE pressed charges for. Gratuity is a reward based system, waiters and waitresses and others who recieve tips should NEVER expect a tip, but, should still perform the duties the best that they can. Our country "the USA" tips the most, most other countries don't even tip. Restraunts are using mandatory gratuities to off set the costs of employing people who are in MOST cases uneducated, high school or college drop outs, and these folks have been currently raised in a society in which they EXPECT a handout. Entitlement is killing this country and it is run rampant through our society, it is time to be smart and reward good actions for what they are, and start saying NO to the ones that feel they are entitled to everything though they themselves perform sub par. It is TIME TO STOP MAKING EXCUSES FOR THE FAILURES IN OUR SOCIETY!

Rknester
Rknester

Outrageous! How does this restaurant think such an action would sound to potential customers? 

20ftJesus
20ftJesus

It's Texas.  Shoot your way out. 

Dave Lieberman
Dave Lieberman

I'd have busted the door down or smashed out a window. Locking someone into a room and refusing to let them out is unlawful restraint under Texas Penal Code §20.02. If the children in the family were under age 14, it's a state jail felony with a minimum sentence of 180 days in jail.

JB
JB

I'm just grateful that Dee Nguyen sends his receipts to the Weekly and doesn't chain the exits.........  :-)

Rene Powers
Rene Powers

I can't even believe this is serious? NO way should this family of been locked in. Actually THEY should have called the police. A GRATUITY is not mandatory for heavens sake and if they did not feel the service warranted a tip then they are not obligated to pay it. Wow, this is wrong on all levels, basically extortion. There must be more to the story?

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