An exotic dancer was an "employee" of an adult entertainment club under the Fair Labor Standards Act ("FLSA"), even though a written agreement disclaimed an employment relationship, a federal district court sitting in Florida recently held in Schofield v. Gold Club Tampa, Inc., No. 8:19-CV-3097-VMC-TGW, 2021 WL 533540 (M.D. Fla. Feb. 12, 2021). The summary judgment evidence showed that the economic reality of the relationship was one of employer and employee given the degree of control over the dancer's work exercised by the club, among other factors.
An exotic dancer who worked at an adult entertainment club brought suit against the club owner and its operator ("club"), seeking a ruling that she had been misclassified as an independent contractor, that she was the club's employee, and that she was thus entitled to employee's protections under the FLSA. The evidence showed that the club's DJ used a list of dancers present at the club on a given shift to set up a rotation for performances on the stage. Each dancer would perform for about two and a half minutes to music she had preselected. In addition to watching dancers on the stage, club patrons could purchase a lap dance in an open booth and/or time with a dancer in a private "VIP room." An employee called a "VIP host" would schedule such activities and collect the money before any activity took place.Read More