FLSA & Volunteers

I cannot find any provision in the law allowing an exemption from the FLSA for volunteers of a private, non-profit corporation. I only see an exemption for volunteers of a "public agency." Is there an exemption for employees of private employers? If so, is it OK to treat some employees as volunteers and others as paid employees, even if they perform the same tasks?


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  • I also work for a private, non-profit. Your question has me puzzled. I thought by definition a "volunteer" was a person who is unpaid and free to come and go as they please. While you may give them direction in the work, if they are subject to FLSA, I don't know about it. I'd be interested in answers too.

  • News flash...I found some info after I posted the previous message. From a newsletter called Long-Term Care Compliance Alert: "In not-for-profit facilities volunteers may not replace regular employees or perform work that would otherwise be performed by other employees.

    "Employees of non-profit ogranizations may not volunteer to perform their same job for their employer without compensation.

    "An individual may volunteer to minister to a client's spiritual or emotional needs so long as they are not performing productive work for the employer. For example, a caregiver may volunteer in off hours to read to a patient, but may not provide direct care."

    Hope that is useful.

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