Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel seemed to be one of the diminishing number of celebrity couples who had found the secret to a lasting marriage. But now, amid a bombshell lawsuit that alleges Jessica kept a significant dollar amount of tips that should have gone to her restaurant’s employees, Biel’s marriage to Timberlake reportedly is falling apart.
Jessica Biel Accused Of Withholding Employee Tips
Radar Online reported on September 27 that Justin and Jessica are “falling apart” over the lawsuit involving her restaurant. Some former and current employees of her Au Fudge eatery are suing the 7th Heaven star for lost tips and break times, and the publication claimed that Biel is literally sick over the allegations.
“[The] humiliating lawsuit involving her Au Fudge restaurant has not only left Jessica Biel sick to her stomach, but the stressful suit may also be taking a toll on her marriage to Justin Timberlake.”
In all, nine employees reportedly are involved in the lawsuit that alleges Jessica pocketed their tips and violated rest break laws. Those tips reportedly are valued at $430,100. But it’s not just the money that hurts Biel, an insider told Radar.
The source described the popular eatery as “Jessica’s baby work-wise,” noting that Biel has “put her heart and soul into making it a success.” Consequently, the knowledge that her employees are accusing her of “short-changing” the staff has been particularly hard for Jessica, according to the insider.
Justin Timberlake Reportedly Hit Hard By Dramatic Lawsuit
The source said that Biel is “freaking out” over the lawsuit drama and that Jessica’s frustrations have extended to her marriage with Justin.
“[Jessica Biel] is starting to take her frustrations home with her, and dumping them on hubby Justin Timberlake.”
While Timberlake reportedly is doing what he can to cheer up Biel, the lawsuit is reportedly making it challenging. According to the insider, Jessica is suffering from a lack of sleep. And while Justin tries to “lift her spirits,” Biel reportedly is staying “glued to her work emails and phone” as she attempts to sort out the complicated situation.
“This is a very difficult time for her and Justin, for sure,” added the source.
An attorney who represents Au Fudge issued a statement that the company “does not comment on pending litigation, and looks forward to defending itself in court.” However, that statement hasn’t prevented details about the lawsuit from leaking.
Jessica Biel Accused Of Converting Gratuities To ‘Pad Pockets’
Page Six reported that Jessica, her business partners, and her family-friendly Los Angeles eatery, Au Fudge, are facing accusations that nine former and current employees were denied thousands of dollars in gratuities.
“Employees… claim they weren’t given proper rest and meal breaks and were stiffed tens of thousands of dollars in gratuities from major Hollywood parties.”
Those parties reportedly were given by large companies such as Netflix, Amazon, and Fox. The employees involved in the lawsuit claim that Timberlake’s wife, along with her partners, “converted said gratuities to themselves in order to pad their own pockets.” As a result, the staff members are seeking $461,649 in compensatory damages, along with punitive damages “in an amount to be ascertained at trial but not less than $1,000,000.”
There’s no hint of any problems on the restaurant’s Instagram posts, which show happy kids enjoying the family-friendly environment.
Jesse M. Caryl, the lawyer who represents Au Fudge, told Page Six that the company and its investors “strongly dispute the allegations raised in the complaint.” While declining to “litigate the matter in the media,” the attorney expressed anticipation for “vigorously defending” the restaurant in court.
Biel opened Au Fudge early in 2016. It has gained a reputation as a child-friendly place. Parents can check their children into a play space overseen by trained au pairs. Then, while the kids are playing, their parents can request cocktails with cute names such as The Little Prince.
Justin Timberlake’s Wife Admits Problems
Grub Street also reported on the lawsuit, noting that although the employees are suing the restaurant for various alleged labor violations, the money is viewed as the worst.
“[Amid the alleged] labor violations, the worst…is allegedly $430,000 worth of wage theft.”
But even before Justin Timberlake’s wife faced these allegations at her restaurant, which serves up a $14 “MILF” cocktail, there were rumors of problems. The publication reported that a chef quit, and Biel’s restaurant faced challenges in getting permits, which was assumed to be the result of trying to combine a semi-day care arrangement with a bar.
Earlier this year, Jessica confessed that she had discovered running an eatery is “way harder” than being in Hollywood. Timberlake’s spouse also confessed that Au Fudge was “definitely not making money,” despite investing in paparazzi-proofed shutters and curtains for the dining room.
[Featured Image by Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images]