U.S. Dept. of Labor Resources

Guides & Publications

  • Checklist

Checklist for Department of Labor Wage and Hour Division Investigation

This checklist contains best practices in the event of an audit by the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) Wage and Hour Division
  • Managing Volunteer Fire Fighters - FLSA (A guide for Fire Chiefs)

Managing Volunteer Firefighters for FLSA Compliance: A Guide for Fire Chiefs and Community Leaders

A guide for fire chiefs and community leaders to better manage volunteer firefighters for FLSA compliance.

Wage and Hour Answer Book

Guidebook to help you be FLSA compliant.

FLSA Manual (IAFF)

Details the FLSA with specific resources for volunteers, sleep and meal time regulations, benefits and more.

Federal Resources

U.S. DOL Recordkeeping and Reporting Requirements

A guide on key information that you must keep about your employees.

U.S. DOL Opinion Letter: Volunteers as Temporarily Paid Staff 2004

U.S. DOL opinion letter on employment of volunteer firefighters as paid staff.

U.S. DOL Opinion Letter: Ability to Volunteer 2008

U.S. DOL opinion letter on being a volunteer and a career firefighter in the same department.

U.S. DOL Opinion Letter: Monthly Stipends 2008

U.S. DOL opinion letter discussing stipends for volunteer firefighters.

U.S. DOL Opinion Letter: Providing Volunteer Benefits 2007

U.S. DOL letter on issues such as Tuition for the Fire Academy; Benefits; and Stipends.

U.S. DOL Opinion Letter: Bright Line Test 2006

The U.S. DOL letter that established the 20% bright line test.

U.S. DOL Opinion Letter: Separate Dept. Same Jurisdiction 2001

DOL opinion letter clarifying if a firefighter can volunteer in the same jurisdiction as their career dept.

U.S. DOL Wage and Hour Division

The DOL’s Wage and Hour Division’s informational website.

Fact Sheet: Law Enforcement and Fire Department Employees (U.S. DOL)

Fact sheet with information on how the FLSA applies to fire protection personnel.

Reference Guide to the Fair Labor Standards Act (U.S. DOL)

A reference guide detailing basic wage standards, minimum wage laws, equal pay, and more.
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U.S. DOL Regional Office Locations

Local/state resources to assist with your questions about the FLSA.

Codes & Regulations

Labor – U.S. Code of Federal Regulations Title 29

This will guide you through Title 29 of the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations.

Labor Guide: U.S. Code Title 29

Cornell Law School’s Legal Information Institute online guide to the code that outlines labor regulations in the U.S.


Fire Law: Emails, Smartphones and Overtime (Firehouse)

Do you need to pay firefighters who read and send emails while off duty?

U.S. DOL Opinion Letter: Reissued Letter on Hiring Volunteers as Contractors 2018

DOL policy and ruling on volunteer fire company contracting for paid EMTs – joint employment and volunteer status.

Fire Law: Volunteers Need to Understand the FLSA (Firehouse)

Curt Varone explains volunteer compensation and its impact on departments.

Applying FLSA to Police and Fire

FLSA guidance for firefighters from the League of Minnesota Cities.

Compensated Volunteers Ruled Employees under FLSA and FLMA

Analyses of volunteer compensation under FLSA.

Overtime in the Age of Smartphones (Firehouse)

Analyses of a ruling involving overtime compensation in the digital age.