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Department of Labor: 4 Texas Oil and Gas Companies Owe $1.6 Million in Overtime Pay

Since 2012 the U.S. Department of Labor has launched more than 1,100 investigations of wage violations in the oil and gas industry, where contracting and subcontracting have traditionally defined (and often obscured) the worker-employer relationship.

So far the Labor Department's investigations have led to the recovery of more than $40 million in unpaid wages for more than 29,000 workers nationwide.

Recently, the Labor Department announced that four Texas companies have been ordered to pay $1.6 million in unpaid overtime and bonuses.

The company that owes the largest amount -- $866,871 -- is Jet Specialty, which is headquartered in Boerne. According to the DOL, Jet failed to pay salaried employees for overtime and failed to correctly calculate bonus pay for overtime wages.

Two Houston companies, Stream-Flo USA and Frank's International, are required to pay employees unpaid wages totaling $75,414 and $555,351, respectively. And Viking Onshore Drilling, based in Odessa, owes workers $167,646 in unpaid bonuses.

The Obama administration and the Labor Department have proposed new overtime rules expected to affect 5 million workers.

Wage and hour disputes are relatively common in Texas, and workers and employers alike need to be aware of their rights and obligations.

For example, under newly proposed rules, salaried workers who earn up to $50,440 a year would automatically be eligible for overtime pay. We discussed the change in more detail in one of our previous posts, "Here's a Rundown of New Rules for Overtime Pay."

If your employer has failed to pay you for hours worked, then you don't have to wait for a government investigation to seek your due payment. You can contact a local employment law attorney to discuss ways of getting your hard-earned compensation.

Michael Galo, of The Galo Law Firm in San Antonio, has dedicated his entire legal practice to employment and labor law. He is experienced in representing employees and employers, so he knows what strategies to use to get results.

To learn more, please see The Galo Law Firm's employment law overview.

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