Nevada Firefighters Claim Overtime Violation Under FLSA

Two Nevada firefighters have filed a class action suit claiming they and their collogues have been wrongly classified as exempt from overtime.  Victor Yohey and Chris Tillisch filed suit last week against the Storey County Fire Protection District in US District Court for the District of Nevada alleging a violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

Yohey and Tillisch claim they and their colleagues were paid straight time for all hours worked in excess of the statutory maximum, instead of overtime. While the complaint does not identify either by rank, the fire district’s web site shows Yohey as a captain and Tillisch as a firefighter-paramedic.

As explained in the complaint:

  • Defendant, at all times material herein, misclassifies Plaintiffs and all others similarly situated as “exempt” employees and unlawfully fails to pay any overtime premiums for overtime work.
  • Instead, Defendant pays Plaintiffs and all others similarly situated a static biweekly wage and, for unscheduled shifts outside Plaintiffs and all others’ similarly situated regular schedule, a straight hourly rate.
  • Defendant, at all times material herein, has failed to pay Plaintiffs and all others similarly situated overtime premium pay at the rate of one and one-half times his/her regular rate of pay when it suffers or permits them to work in excess of forty (40) hours in a week, in excess of fifty-three (53) hours in a week, in excess of one hundred and six (106) hours in a fourteen (14)-day period, or in excess of two hundred and twelve (212) hours in a twenty-eight (28) day period.

Here is a copy of the complaint:

Bill Maccarone at firefighterovertime.com has more on this story.

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About Curt Varone

Curt Varone has over 40 years of fire service experience and 30 as a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine. His background includes 29 years as a career firefighter in Providence (retiring as a Deputy Assistant Chief), as well as volunteer and paid on call experience. He is the author of two books: Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, (2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014) and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook (2007), and is a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine writing the Fire Law column.
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