Settlement Reached in Cleveland EMS FLSA Lawsuit

The City of Cleveland, OH has agreed to pay over $619,322 to settle a 2018 lawsuit filed by a lone EMT alleging the city violated the FLSA and Ohio state law. The suit, which was filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio in November 2018, contained rather straight-forward allegations of underpaid overtime. Specifically, EMS Captain Margerita ...

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207(k) Exemption, Non-Firefighter Medics, and the FLSA

Today’s FLSA Question: I recently accepted a job as fire chief in a small combination fire department. We have a great mix of full-time, part-time, and paid-on-call firefighters. This department is much smaller than my previous employer and they do things a little differently. I am concerned about the way we pay our non-firefighter medics. Historically, the department hired from ...

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Legal Implications of Quarantined Firefighters and the Corona Virus

In this Podcast, Curt Varone and I discuss the legal implications related to the quarantine of firefighters following the recent Corona COVID – 19 breakout. The issues discussed include: the applicability of workers’ compensation benefits for quarantined firefighters, FLSA wage and hour requirements for injured and quarantined firefighters, and much more.

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Judge Sides with WV Firefighters In First Round of Holiday Pay Dispute; Extent of Damages and Fate of Retaliation Claims Remain

A Berkeley County West Virginia Circuit Court judge issued a summary judgement ruling in favor of approximately three dozen current and former Martinsburg, West Virginia firefighters following a 2018 lawsuit over holiday pay. A summary judgement ruling is a judicial decision based on undisputed facts without the need for a full-blown trial. Here, Judge Laura Faircloth found the city liable ...

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Regular Rate, Sick Leave Incentives, and the FLSA

Today’s FLSA Question: I am the fire chief of a mid-sized municipal fire department. The most recent collective bargaining agreement with our firefighters contains an incentive plan designed to curb sick leave abuse. Firefighters and officers that use less than 72 hours of sick leave during a calendar year receive an additional 24 hours of paid leave during the following ...

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Georgia County Reaches Settlement with Battalion Chiefs Following FLSA Suit

The Newton County Fire Department has reached a settlement with three battalion chiefs (BCs) following a 2019 lawsuit over FLSA overtime. The three BCs filed the suit in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia in November 2019. The three alleged the county improperly reclassified BCs from overtime eligible first responders to overtime exempt employees in July 2018. ...

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Rookie New Mexico Firefighters Get A Raise… Thanks to New State Minimum Wage

Entry-level firefighters in Raton, New Mexico received an unexpected wage increase earlier this month following an increase the state’s minimum wage. Effective January 1, 2020 the State of New Mexico increased its minimum wage from $7.50 to $9.00 per hour. The City of Raton and its firefighters work under the terms of a collective bargaining agreement that allows the city ...

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Firefighters, Time and One-Quarter Pay, and the FLSA

Today’s FLSA Question: I am a fire chief for a small full-time fire district. Our firefighters only receive overtime after they work 212 hours in a twenty-eight-day work period. We do not pay any overtime unless the FLSA requires it. The vast majority of our neighboring departments pay their firefighters overtime for any unscheduled work hours regardless of actual hours ...

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Las Vegas Settles Lone Firefighter’s Overtime Lawsuit For More Than $500K

The City of Las Vegas has agreed to pay a veteran city firefighter $560,000 to settle a 2019 lawsuit for unpaid overtime. The settlement follows allegations of unpaid overtime made by Eric Scheumann, an 18-year veteran and current firefighter/engineer for the Las Vegas Fire Department. Scheumann alleged the city failed to pay him for more than 4,500 work hours between ...

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