Changing Tax Laws to Affect Restaurants

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STAUNTON, Va. (WHSV) -- As local eateries close out 2013, a new law could make them rethink old habits when it comes to dining out in groups.

The next time you eat out, the bill could look a lot different.

The change could also mean less of your tip finding its way into your waiter's pocket.

The IRS will soon start considering automatic gratuities as a wage, not a tip.

Michael Digrassie, the owner of Mrs. Rowe's in Staunton said the new rule means less money for servers and more paperwork for restaurants.

Under the rule, those automatic gratuities will become part of servers' taxable income.

Digrassie, said the decision could cut how much servers make considerably.

For the restaurant, he said the new rule is just another headache.

"It's a pretty simple change, it's just like with everything, just gets to be another regulation that you have to live with. We have enough regulations in the restaurant industry. We don't need any more," said Digrassie.

He also said at Mrs. Rowe's they only add an automatic gratuity when they have a large buffet party; however, with the new rule, they're going to stop adding that automatically. is happy to provide a forum for commenting and discussion. Please respect and abide by the house rules:

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