Dead Beat Employers

Joined Jan 1, 2001
Well folks, I'm looking for some solice here. I just got the shaft from a client. I did great work for them, they loved the recipes I developed, they loved (and published) the food I styled. "Gee, you're the greatest!" I kept hearing. Four months later, I'm filing in small claims to get paid for the work I've done and found out the company is insolvent due to the CEO's gambling addiction. Grrr!

I've had experience with these types before in the restaurant industry. Chef-owners who choose to snort the money that was ear marked to pay your social security deductions---or the managers who conveniently loose your group health insurance reimbursment check only to find it 6 months later, torn and under the desk somewhere.

Any other stories?

[ June 15, 2001: Message edited by: foodnfoto ]
Joined Jan 1, 2001
Thanks Svad. Sorry about my grousing, it's just that some people think we do this kind of work for fun. That's true, but I really do it because I'm good at it and it's a way to make a good living.
Believe me, there are more fun things to do for recreation than grocery shopping for 9 hours straight, shlepping a kitchen's worth of food and equipment up a 5th floor walk-up, or prepping 5 times the recipe just to get 1 beautiful serving.

I expect to get paid! This is my vocation!
Joined Jan 15, 2001
Did you only get a paycheck after 4 months? I'm sorry for you bad experience and wish you better luck.
I have had experiences freelancing in pastry work when I thought I would not get paid for all the hard work. I learnt my lesson by asking to be paid at the end of a week's worth of work. If they don't pay me I don't go back and don't leave any recipes.
Joined Nov 19, 1999
What a terrible experience for you, Foodnfoto. I hope things work out for you and this situation is swiftly settled. :eek:
Joined Oct 17, 2000
About 12 years ago, I got a job as a pastry chef at a very successful restaurant in an afluent suburb. One of the deals was that the owner would pay my insurance, until the company insurance kicked in (90 days). We both signed a written agreement on the back of the resume I submitted. After a month passed, I did'nt get any extra money. I waited a couple more weeks, just to see if it would come...It did'nt. When I asked the owner about our agreement, he said "what agreement?". I asked to see the signed back of the resume. When he produced it, the back was blank. He made a copy of the front, and threw the original out. Needless to say, I quit. It was 1 week before Christmas, and my daughter was 6 months old.
About 6 months later, the business went into chapter 13 (bankrupt). The owner went to trial for racketeering, and money laundering (connected to organized crime).
I know how you feel will pass.....things will get better. In the years to come,I have found many people in the business who have said that they heard stories about this guy. I only wish there was a way to know in advance.
Joined Oct 28, 1999
I, too, was in a similair situation. I was working for a local 'landmark'. After 2 weeks on the job, I got a call from my bank saying I had a mountain of bounced checks. Come to find out that the deposit I made with my paycheck bounced like the Lakers all over the 76-ers. He made good on the fees, but I left, anyhow. The place was shuttered a month later.
I had never been in that situation before, however, it has just recently happened at a restaurant just a few blocks from my house. The owner grabbed some equipment and liquor and left town in the middle of the night! For real! He burned a lot of people.
It would be great if there was some type of 'registry' for deadbeat employers.
We all spend time in the interview process... perhaps we should interview our potential employers as scrupulously as they interview us! ;)

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