HOUSTON, Texas. One of the ways that oilfield companies save money is by classifying workers as independent contractors. How you are classified as a worker can make a big difference regarding your pay rate, your responsibility when it comes to paying taxes, and your ability to access certain types of benefits like worker’s compensation and unemployment. Many oilfield companies want to classify workers as independent contractors because of the tax benefits and because these workers can be better utilized to serve short-term needs. There are cases where workers and companies might mutually benefit from an independent contractor relationship. For example, consultants and individuals running their own businesses will often enter independent contractor relationships. However, if you are looking for a job, and an oilfield company wants to label you an independent contractor—watch out. [Read more…] about Independent Contractor Misclassification on the Oilfield: What You Need to Know
HOUSTON, Texas. It’s the holiday season. For some workers, this means added time off, while for others, especially those in deliveries and retail, this is the time of year where workers will likely need to put in some overtime. If you are off during the holiday, is your company entitled to cut your pay for the days off? And if you need to work during the holiday, are you entitled to time-and-a-half overtime pay? [Read more…] about Am I Entitled to Receive Overtime Pay for Working Christmas and New Year’s?
HOUSTON, Texas. According to the Casper Star Tribune, an oilfield services company in Wyoming has been ordered to pay $1.2 million in unpaid overtime wages to its workers. The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division investigated the company after learning that some workers had been paid extra for each foot of casing they installed. However, when the Department of Labor looked more closely at the wages paid to the workers, they found that this payment model resulted in workers not getting paid the overtime wages they deserved. [Read more…] about Department of Labor Finds that Oilfield Workers in Wyoming Were Not Paid Overtimes
HOUSTON, Texas. All too often we hear about how sexual harassment has cost men their careers. What is seldom discussed are the many career opportunities women miss or lose out on because of sexual harassment. Neil Degrasse Tyson has come under fire for alleged sexual misconduct. While Forbes has been quick to discuss how these allegations are likely to cost Tyson millions of dollars in media and book deals, what often gets overlooked are the real impacts that sexual impropriety can have on women—in terms of financial losses, but also in terms of lost career opportunities. [Read more…] about How Sexual Harassment Not Only Reduces Women’s Wages but Ends Their Careers
HOUSTON, Texas. Back pay is the term used to describe any wages you may be owed by an employer. In some cases, workers are not paid for all the hours they worked. For example, oilfield employers may claim that time spent waiting is not payable, when it often is. Back pay may also be collectable if your employer fired you without due cause or if you were fired in retaliation for reporting sexual harassment. Basically, if you are not being paid for every hour you are working, including payment for overtime, you may be eligible to collect back pay. Employers are required to pay time and a half for overtime worked. [Read more…] about Are You Owed Back Pay?
HOUSTON, Texas. If you work in Texas’s oilfields or in the prison system, recent reports indicate that you might be more at risk of facing sexual harassment on the job. Women who pursue non-traditional roles may face increased challenges in getting taken seriously on the job, and they may not always have the same level of support from superiors or co-workers when they face sexual harassment or assault. There have been reports of “boys clubs” and systems where groups of men take actions that could be labelled as nothing other than discrimination, assault, and harassment. [Read more…] about Do Women in Non-Traditional Roles Face Greater Risk of Sexual Harassment?