Tag Archives: executive exemption

Washington State Battalion Chiefs Will Get Their Day in Court

Should battalion chiefs be eligible for FLSA overtime? That is precisely the question a federal court in Washington State will be answering in the coming months. This case is one of many pending lawsuits that we are following regarding shift commanders and overtime eligibility. This particular case began in May of 2017, when eight current and former Vancouver, Washington, battalion ...

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Another Week, Another FLSA Lawsuit for Overtime from a Shift Commander

Lately, it seems that a week cannot pass without a complaint, settlement, or ruling pertaining to first responders being classified, or misclassified, under the FLSA’s “white-collar” exemptions. Here are just a couple of recent examples: Florida Battalion Chiefs File FLSA Suit Virginia Battalion Chiefs File Lawsuit Seeking Overtime Pay California City and Firefighters Reach Global Settlement following a 2016 FLSA ...

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Florida Battalion Chiefs File FLSA Suit

On September 12, 2018, six Battalion Chiefs (BCs) from the Greater Naples Fire Rescue District (district) filed a lawsuit in federal court seeking overtime pay. According to the complaint, the district classifies the BCs as white collar overtime-exempt employees. The BCs estimate that each is owed approximately $60,000 in unpaid overtime wages for the past 3 years. Additionally, the complaint ...

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Battalion Chiefs, Executive Exemption, and Overtime

FLSA Question: I am a battalion chief in a mid-sized municipal fire department. I command a platoon of firefighters and work 24-hour shifts. I work an average of 56 hours per week. I do not receive any overtime. The city considers myself and other BCs overtime-exempt executives. . . . I recently read that “first responders” are entitled to overtime ...

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Virginia Battalion Chiefs File Lawsuit Seeking Overtime Pay

Seven Battalion Chiefs from the Chesapeake Fire Department, in Chesapeake, Virginia, have filed a federal lawsuit looking for overtime pay. The Battalion Chiefs claim the city violated both the Fair Labor Standards Act and Virginia Gap Pay Act. The complaint, which was filed on July 24, 2018, in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, alleges ...

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California City and Firefighters Reach Global Settlement following a 2016 FLSA Lawsuit

The City of San Luis Obispo has reportedly reached a settlement with city firefighters following a 2016 federal lawsuit regarding overtime pay. The firefighters alleged the city failed to include money paid in-lieu of receiving employer sponsored medical benefits in the firefighter’s regular rate of pay. Properly determining a firefighter’s regular rate is critical, since all FLSA overtime must be ...

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Military Leave and the FLSA

Today’s FLSA Question: Does the FLSA require employers to pay employees while they are on military leave? Answer: Good question. The answer is maybe . . . and it depends. . . We need a little more information to answer this one. As a general rule, the FLSA does not require that employers continue to pay employees while they’re on ...

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Louisiana Police Chief Criminally Charged for False Overtime Claims

Former Killian, Louisiana, Police Chief Dennis Hill has been indicted on felony malfeasance charges for allegedly requesting payments for overtime he never worked. The felony charge comes on the heels of an investigation conducted by the Louisiana Legislative Auditor into the former chief’s actions. Despite numerous claims of alleged criminal conduct within the auditor’s report, the grand jury only indicted ...

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Extra Pay May Not Defeat Exempt Status for Fire Dept. Executive

Today’s FLSA Question: I am the HR director for a suburban town. The fire chief is going to be out on medical leave for several months. The senior assistant chief will be moved up to fill in for the chief in his absence. Senior fire department staff (chief and both assistants) are overtime exempt. Even though it is not required, ...

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Update on IAFF – FLSA Lawsuit

This past July the Spokane Valley Fire Department (SVFD) filed an unusual lawsuit against the union that represents Spokane Valley firefighters (IAFF Local 3701). SVFD wanted the court to issue a “declaratory judgement” that SVFD battalion chiefs and fire marshals were exempt from receiving FLSA overtime. A declaratory judgement is when a court is asked to issue a formal opinion ...

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