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Welcome to Fire Law – where we discuss the most important legal issues facing the American fire service!!! Join your host, Curt Varone, as we consider the often bizarre, at times humorous, but always challenging issues!

Welcome to Fire Law – where we discuss the most important legal issues facing the American fire service!!! Join your host, Curt Varone, as we consider the often bizarre, at times humorous, but always challenging issues!
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United States

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Welcome to Fire Law – where we discuss the most important legal issues facing the American fire service!!! Join your host, Curt Varone, as we consider the often bizarre, at times humorous, but always challenging issues!

Language:

English


Episodes

Fire Law Episode 25: Illinois Fire Protection District Files Opioid Lawsuit

7/20/2018
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The Orland Park Fire Protection District joined 13 Illinois communities in filing suit against drug manufacturers and distributors over the opioid epidemic. In this episode, Curt discusses the suit with attorney Ian Schrag, who represents Orland Park.

Duration:00:27:06

Episode 24: Pink Collar Theft In The Fire Service

1/10/2018
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In this episode, Curt discusses a little known problem, Pink Collar Crime, with Kelly Paxton. Kelly runs the web site pinkcollarfraud.com and is helping to debunk the myths that many of us hold about fire service embezzlement.

Duration:00:27:42

Podcast 23: Drone Law Update

6/27/2017
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In this episode, Curt discusses drone law with Dr. Thomas Abbott and Civil Air Patrol Commander Daniel Leclair from the University of Maine’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems program. Tom is the director of the university’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems program and Dan is one of the instructors in the program.

Duration:00:28:24

Podcast 22: Hazing, Pranks and Bullying in the Fire Service

6/25/2017
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In this episode, Curt and Linda Willing discuss the cultural and legal challenges associated with hazing, pranks and bullying in the fire service. Linda is a retired fire officer from the Boulder (CO) Fire Department, and is now a noted author, columnist and lecturer. She is the author of On the Line: Women Firefighters Tell Their Stories, and is a monthly columnist for FireRescue1 and Fire Chief.

Duration:00:38:51

Podcast 21: Prince George’s County Fireground Altercation Case – The Lawyer’s Edition

6/1/2017
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In this episode, Curt and attorney Brian Bregman discuss the complicated legal issues associated with disciplinary investigations where the accused firefighters are potentially subject to criminal liability – and may have a 5th Amendment Right to remain silent. Brian represented one of two Prince George’s County volunteer firefighters who were recently acquitted of assaulting two female career firefighters at the scene of a structure fire in 2015. In the case important Garrity issues...

Duration:01:04:29

Podcast 20: Prince George’s County Fireground Altercation Case

5/22/2017
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In this episode, Curt discusses the recent acquittal of two Prince George’s County volunteer firefighters with Attorney Brian Bregman. Brian represented one of the firefighters accused of assaulting two female career firefighters at the scene of a structure fire in 2015.

Duration:01:00:33

Podcast 19: Dealing with the Toxic Employee

4/21/2017
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In this episode, Curt and attorney Matt Dolan discuss the leadership challenge of dealing with the toxic employee. Approximately 60 percent of fire service litigation are HR-types of suits, and many of those lawsuits involve the 1% who make everyone’s lives more difficult: the toxic employee. Curt and Matt will be presenting a program on Fire Service Leadership in Grand Rapids, Michigan on May 15-16, 2017. Click here for more details.

Duration:00:34:56

Fire Law Podcast 18 - Cyberbullying in the Fire Service

3/23/2017
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In this episode Curt and retired Battalion Chief John Cagno discuss cyberbullying in the fire service. The discussion ranges from legal considerations to leadership responsibilities.

Duration:00:38:12

Fire Law Podcast 17: FLSA Overtime, Officers and the First Responder Regulations

3/19/2017
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Are fire officers eligible for overtime? Does rank matter? In this episode Curt and Bill Maccarone discuss overtime issues associated with fire officers. Many fire departments consider some or all of their officers to be exempt from the overtime requirements of the FLSA under the “white collar” exemption. Court cases between 1985 and 2003 were all over the board. In 2004, the US Department of Labor implemented the First Responder Regulations in an effort to clarify the difficult issues.

Duration:00:22:52

Fire Law Podcast Episode 16: White Collar and Small Fire Department Exemptions

3/8/2017
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In this episode, Curt and Bill Maccarone continue their discussion about FLSA overtime issues in the fire service with an introduction to the so-called white-collar exemptions that allow employees classified as executives, administrative or professionals to be exempt from minimum wage and maximum hours requirements. Also discussed is the small fire department exemption. This is the fourth in a series of podcasts about how the FLSA impacts the fire service.

Duration:00:30:39

Fire Law Podcast Episode 15

2/27/2017
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In this episode, Curt and Bill Maccarone continue their discussion about overtime issues in the fire service with an overview of "regular rate". Regular rate refers to the amount of hourly compensation that must be multiplied by 1.5 to determine the overtime rate. While that may seem simple, its application is anything but.

Duration:00:31:26

Fire Law Podcast Episode 14

2/21/2017
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In this episode, Curt and Bill Maccarone continue their discussion about overtime issues in the fire service with an overview of the 207k partial exemption. The 207k, or 7k, exemption extends the maximum hours for firefighters from 40 to 53 hours per week and extends the 7 day work week to a possible 28 day work period.

Duration:00:33:19

Fire Law Episode 13

2/16/2017
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Curt and Bill Maccarone discuss the Fair Labor Standards Act, and how the FLSA impacts fire departments ranging from career to volunteer.

Duration:00:29:41

Fire Law Episode 12 - Vallejo Firefighter Awarded $2.3 Million

3/28/2016
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In this episode, Curt talks with Oakland attorney Leslie Levy about the $2.3 million verdict she won on behalf of former Vallejo firefighter Todd Milan. Milan was terminated from the Vallejo Fire Department in November, 2012. His problems began on September 29, 2011 at the scene of a mobile home fire that claimed the life of a disabled man. Milan claims he was ordered to force entry by a battalion chief, and upon entering found himself alone because his officer apparently forgot his gloves...

Duration:00:30:05

Podcast Episode 11 – Florida Firefighter Prevails in Cancer Related Disability Case

12/31/2015
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In this episode of Fire Law, Curt and Florida firefighter-attorney Mike Clelland discuss Mike’s recent victory for an Orlando firefighter who was seeking a cancer-related disability pension. Mike, a 26 year fire service veteran and former state legislator, now practices with the law firm of Morgan & Morgan.

Duration:00:15:23

Podcast Episode 10 - Firefight: The Century-Long Battle to Integrate New York's Bravest

12/3/2015
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In this episode of Fire Law, Curt interviews Ginger Adams Otis, the author of Firefight: The Century-Long Battle to Integrate New York's Bravest. Ginger is a writer at the NY Daily News and previously worked at the NY Post. She started covering NY City Hall and the FDNY when she worked for The Chief-Leader. She's been a radio and print freelancer for WNYC, the Associated Press, BBC, National Public Radio, The Village Voice and national magazines such as Jane and Ms. The interview covers...

Duration:00:34:53

Fire Law Podcast Episode No. 9 – Firefighter Overtime

9/17/2015
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In this episode, firefighter attorney Bill Maccarone and Curt discuss a recent 9th Circuit ruling in an overtime case brought by 82 California firefighters who claimed their fire department miscalculated their overtime.

Duration:00:29:08

Fire Law - Episode 8 - FDNY Disability Pension Settles Discrimination Suit

8/17/2015
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In this edition of Fire Law, Curt discusses the controversial settlement of an FDNY discrimination suit with Attorney Peter J. Gleason, himself a retired FDNY firefighter. Peter represented FDNY firefighter Kevin Simpkins who was awarded a disability pension earlier this year. The settlement made for sensational headlines. Consider the following from the NY Post on may 22, 2015: He’s had a much better run in court than battling fires. Twelve-year FDNY firefighter Kevin Simpkins — the...

Duration:00:33:54

Fire Law - Episode 7 - Duty to Act

7/19/2015
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In this episode, Curt explores the connection between the law relating to duty to act and real life in a discussion with Fire Commissioner Dave Phillips, from the Washingtonville Fire District in New York. Commissioner Phillips suffered a heart attack and was brought back to life through the valiant efforts of his son, an FDNY firefighter, and a local EMS unit.

Duration:00:16:42

Fire Law Episode 6 - Product Liability Suits Over Fire Helmets

3/20/2015
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In this episode of Fire Law, attorney Jim Magazine discusses the five lawsuits he has filed over neck injuries to firefighters from the Cairns 1044 Helmet. The product liability suits were filed in Florida state court against MSA, the parent company for Cairns. The suits claim the helmets are defectively designed.

Duration:00:13:41