WSVN — Dancing is their passion. Getting paid is their problem. They’re South Florida women who work in elaborate costumes to entertain in nightclubs, but getting their money from a contractor who hired them has them calling Help Me Howard with Patrick Fraser.

If you’re young, single and active, it doesn’t get much better than living on South Beach.

Anais Naaman: “Oh, I love it. It’s a beautiful city. I love everything about it, except for the noise sometimes when I’m trying to sleep.”

When Anais says the noise wakes her up, it’s because she sleeps late after working two jobs: one as a bartender, the other as a dancer.

Anais Naaman: “Dancing, I worked at all the nightclubs. I worked at Space.”

This is Anais and her friends, dressed in their revealing costumes, entertaining the crowds in South Florida nightclubs.

Anais Naaman: “It’s fun to wear different costumes, and a group of girls, we all get along with each other. It’s just a fun environment.”

The women are hired to dance at the clubs by a contractor call Mike Lee. The records show the girls are paid anywhere from $125 to $200 for a couple of hours’ work. Or let me correct myself, should have been paid that money.

Anais Naaman: “He was completely avoiding me ’cause it had been, like, more than two months. I had yet to receive a payment.”

Anais says Lee owes her $2,225, and she says five more of her friends are also owed money for dancing at the clubs. They didn’t want to go on camera.

Anais Naaman: “They’re so scared of him, because they think like, ‘Oh, he’s really not going to pay me, then,’ like, he’s not gonna pay you.”

In an e-mail to Anais, the contractor wrote the reason the girls haven’t been paid by one club is because the club is running a month behind and has only paid half of the total on some invoices. Anais says that’s not true.

Anais Naaman: “The clubs are definitely paying him.”

Patrick Fraser: “So you know he got paid.”

Anais Naaman: “Yeah.”

Patrick Fraser: “And he’s still not paying.”

Anais Naaman: “Uh huh.”

And Anais says he still hasn’t paid, still owes her $2,225 dollars, and he’s still stalling.

Anais Naaman: “Basically because he tells me, ‘I have a check,’ and he is sending it to me, and he doesn’t.”

Well, Howard, it appears the clubs are paying the contractor to bring in the dancers, but they aren’t being paid. Legally, what do they do?

Howard Finkelstein: “If the dancers were employees of either the club or the contractor who hired them, they could file a complaint with their counties’ wage theft program to help get their money back. But they are what the law calls independent contractors, and all they can do is sue the contractor in small claims court.”

I first spoke to Scarlett’s. A representative told me they had paid Lee for the girls’ performance. When I told them Anais didn’t get the money, Scarlett’s paid the $200 again out of their own pocket. Anais then got $400 for performances at Passion nightclub.

The attorney for Club Space told me they had paid Lee for the girls’ dance performances. I contacted Mike Lee. He told me the girls would get paid when he got paid. When I told him the club said they had already paid him, he said he was working out payment arrangements.

Lee then sent Anais a check for $175, meaning she is still owed about $1,200 dollars. Lee then quit answering my calls and blocked me from contacting him on Twitter.

Anais Naaman: “I think without Help Me Howard, he probably wouldn’t have paid me one single dollar.”

And Anais says this battle has spurred her to start her own small business to hire dancers for events. She can make them a promise: They will get paid.

Anais Naaman: “And just make sure no one else goes through what I went through, which was a headache.”

Patrick Fraser: “Businesses are started for various reasons. Not getting paid is what motivated Anais. If you work for someone and they don’t pay, first of all quit before you get too far behind. If you are an independent contractor, sue in small claims court. You don’t need an attorney there. If you are an employee, the county or federal government can do the legwork for you.”

Tired of dancing around trying to solve your problem? Ready to put on a show? Contact us. We don’t look good in costume, but we can ad-dress the situation . With this Help Me Howard, I’m Patrick Fraser, 7News.

Wage ComplaintsBroward County –

Miami-Dade County –

Federal –


E-mail: (please include your contact phone number when e-mailing)
Reporter: Patrick Fraser at
Miami-Dade: 305-953-WSVN
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