Senior United States District Court Judge Rebecca Beach Smith has approved a $200,000 settlement in a FLSA misclassification lawsuit filed late last year by a group of Emergency Medical Service (EMS) Captains, in Virginia Beach, Virginia. The settlement, which was officially approved by the court on Friday December 10, 2021, requires the City of Virginia Beach to pay a total of $200,000 to the eight named plaintiffs and their attorneys. The settlement also requires the city to “re-classify” EMS Captains as overtime eligible hourly employees, and not “white-collar” overtime exempt employees moving forward. For more on the initial complaint, as well as a copy of the Joint Motion to Approve the Settlement Agreement, click here.
Is an EMS supervisor that works in a “fly-car” a high-level manager or a first responder? Is a shift commander working a 24-hour shift a highly compensated overtime exempt employee or a first responder? The answers to both of those questions depend greatly upon the individual facts and circumstances of the situation. Whether firefighters, EMS officers, and other public safety personnel can be classified as overtime exempt employees is one of the most hotly debated topics in the fire service today. Fire departments frequently label their battalion chiefs, staff personnel and even company level officers as “exempt,” yet few fire service leaders know why these professionals are exempt. Do you have questions regarding the “white-collar” overtime exemptions and the fire service? Please consider joining us on Wednesday December 15, 2021, to get the answers. Advanced FLSA: Executive Exemption: Fire Officers and Overtime