Bartender Advances 401(k) Tip Suit Against Host International

March 7, 2021

Airport food provider Host International Inc. must defend a proposed class action claiming it improperly blocks tipped workers from contributing tips to their 401(k) accounts, following a ruling by the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland.

Host bartender Dan Frankenstein can move forward with claims that the company improperly denied him and other workers benefits under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act, Judge Peter J. Messitte held Thursday.

“Host International’s policy of paying tips in cash at the end of each shift effectively denies tipped employees the opportunity to defer that income on a pretax basis, and it...