A group of five firefighters previously or currently employed by an Alabama city have reached an agreement with that area's governing body to settle a lawsuit over various Fair Labor Standards Act claims.
The five plaintiffs will split a total amount of $170,000 with their lawyers, with each firefighter getting an average of $11,000. The settlement was reached ahead of an early March court date, according to local news source AL.com. The workers had previously sought a settlement amount of $610,000 during negotiations in late 2013, but talks broke down before an agreement could be reached.
The decision still needs to be approved by a judge, but city government and firefighters are confident the resolution will be approved.
Attorney Daniel J. Burnick of law firm Sirote & Permutt PC points out that proper worker classification - either exempt or non-exempt from hourly wage and overtime requirements - can mitigate legal troubles that stem from these kind of cases. Consultation with an experienced labor attorney is recommended to make sure classifications are appropriate.
If workers are deemed to be non-exempt, then businesses can improve hour tracking and pay calculations through the use of attendance tracking software.
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