Exotic Dancers classified as employees not independant dancers under FLSA

Each of the named Plaintiffs in this action had performed at Club Onyx (“Onyx” or the “Club”) as a dancer/entertainer. Onyx is a club in Atlanta, Georgia that features “nude, female exotic dancers.” In determining whether an employer-employee relationship existed between the Club and Plaintiffs, the Partial Summary Judgment Order of the Court stated,  “[n]o one factor is determinative;” “each factors should be given weight according to how much light it sheds on the nature of the economic dependence of the putative employee on the employer.” Perdomo, 298 Fed.. at 821 (citing Antenor, 88 F.3d at 928-33); see also Usery v. Pilgrim Equip. Co., 527 F.2d 1308, 1311 (5th Cir.1976) (“No one of these considerations can become the final determinant, nor can the collective answers to all of the inquiries produce a resolution which submerges consideration of the dominant factor–economic dependence.”); Benshoff, 180 F.3d at 141 (“‘[t]he employer-employee relationship does not lend itself to rigid per se definitions, but depends upon the circumstances of the whole activity.’” (quoting Reich v. ConAgra, Inc., 987 F.2d 1357, 1361 (8th Cir. 1993)). The Court has found that the Club’s degree of control over the work of entertainers, the entertainers’ opportunity for profit and loss, the entertainers’ relative investment, the lack of specialized skill required to be an entertainer,and the integral nature of nude entertainment to the Club’s business support a finding that an employer-employee relationship existed between the Club and Plaintiffs. Considering these factors that the Eleventh Circuit has identified as relevant, and in light of the record as a whole, the Court finds that Plaintiffs should have been classified as employees under the FLSA.

Read full Order here:

Karenza_1-09-CV-2082-RWS

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