K-9 Police Officers In Texas and Overtime
It is customary practice in Texas police departments for K-9 patrol officers to have their dogs not only while on duty but off duty also. This makes the most sense as the dog and officer are the ultimate partners. They perform in unison and are a highly effective tool for public safety and policing in the State of Texas. K-9-unit officers are the primary care giver and provider for his dog. This means that time spent bathing, brushing, feeding, grooming, cleaning of his kennel, taking the dog to the vet, administering any medications and any additional at home training are all time that is to be compensated for by local departments.
FLSA Handler Compensation
There have been many cases that have ruled that the FLSA applied to K-9 units and their handlers for at home care and training. This ruling has been the standard for decisions nationwide for these cases. There was also a letter by the Department of Labor in 1993 that outlined what the overtime compensation should be and how to calculate it.
30% Or More Police Departments Still Are Not in Compliance
Even with all the regulations put in place for K-9 units there are still up to 30% of police forces around the country that are not in compliance paying overtime to their K-9 officers for the overtime they are due, because of the additional at home care and training they provide to their dogs.
Statute of Limitation on Overtime Claims
The rules and regulations suggest that there is a 2-to-3-year statute of limitations on what you could be due if your department or agency is not in compliance with the overtime regulations for K-9 Officers. This means that if you suspect that you are owed overtime for your work and service, delaying will only be costing you the compensation that you deserve.
How Much You Could Be Owed
The courts have produced a formula of a half hour per day or 4 hours per week of overtime at minimum you would be owed for your homing caring for your dog. The hours can be increased based on the amount of care and travel time for necessary for care of your dog. In some cases, the amount owed to K-9 officers can reach $40,000 to $80,000 each depending on the K-9 officers’ length of service. This is significant.
How Much Will the Lawsuit Cost Me?
This type of case is one such that the Attorney fees are paid by the employer if they lose and there is clear cut law on your side to win. Call David Langenfeld at Leichter Law to find out more about how he can help you get what you deserve. David is a Board-Certified Labor Attorney in Texas, only 1% of all Attorneys in Texas are certified in Labor Law. If you want someone who will be in your corner and fight for you and has the credentials and experience you need, call him today to discuss your case.