Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport Board
This is an FLSA lawsuit filed against Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport Board (“DFW airport”) on behalf of its paramedics working the EMS division, seeking unpaid overtime and other money damages for the past three years. The lawsuit claims DFW Airport is violating the FLSA by 1) illegally classifying its paramedics as §207(k) firefighters (or employees employed in fire protection activities) and 2) failing to include all renumeration earned into the regular rate for purposes of paying overtime.
Overtime Pay for Paramedics vs. Firefighters
Whether an EMT, paramedic, firefighter, or other employees can qualify for the §207(k) “firefighter” partial overtime exemption depends on whether the employee meets the definition of an employee engaged in fire protection activities. To be exempt, the employee must be an employee engaged in fire protection activities, which requires that the employee be:
- Employed by a public fire department;
- Trained in fire suppression;
- Have the legal authority and responsibility to engage in fire suppression; and
- Be engaged in the prevention, control, and extinguishment of fires or response to emergency situations.
All four of the above requirements must be satisfied to qualify for the FLSA’s firefighter overtime exemption.
Regular Rate Claims
The FLSA requires overtime to be paid at one-and-one-half times the regular rate. However, the FLSA generally requires that most non-discretionary bonuses or incentive payments to be included in the regular rate.
September 21, 2018 – The Court entered a Scheduling Order
On September 21, 2018, the Court entered a Scheduling Order setting a trial date and various other deadlines for the case.
June 27, 2018 – Notice Delivered to Class Members
On June 27, 2018, Plaintiffs’ counsel sent out the Court-approved Notice and Consent Form. Those who wish to join the suit must complete and return their Consent Form to Plaintiffs’ counsel no later than August 26, 2018.
June 7, 2018 – Court Certifies Class
On June 7, 2018 the Court conditionally certified a class of DFW Airport’s Emergency Medical Technicians or Paramedics who were not paid overtime for hours worked over forty (40) in a workweek at any time from February 7, 2016 to the present. The Court authorized Plaintiffs’ counsel to send all class members a court-approved notice regarding the lawsuit and a consent to join the lawsuit.
June 1, 2018 – Unopposed Motion for Conditional Class Certification Filed
On June 1, 2018, we filed a Motion for Conditional Class Certification and Notice to Potential Class Members, which DFW Airport did not oppose. In the motion, we asked the court to certify a class of DFW Airport’s Emergency Medical Technicians or Paramedics who were not paid overtime for hours worked over forty (40) in a workweek. Plaintiffs also requested that the Court authorize Plaintiffs’ counsel to notify all potential class members of this lawsuit and of their ability to join the lawsuit.
February 7, 2018 – Complaint filed