From the February 2019 Independent Contractor Misclassification and Compliance News Update, Richard Reibstein reports that oil well and drill site managers reached a settlement of their misclassification claims with Chevron Corporation. Richard writes:
Well and drill site managers providing services in states including California, Texas, New Mexico and Oklahoma, have reached a $3.2 million settlement with Chevron Corporation in a proposed class and collective action alleging FLSA and state wage and hour violations due to the managers’ misclassification as independent contractors and not employees. According to the amended class and collective action complaint, Chevron directed the work of the site managers through the company’s policies, practices, supervision, and ability to discipline the managers; the managers worked exclusively for Chevron on a full-time and continuing basis; the managers did not sell or advertise their services to the general public and were required to follow Chevron’s instructions and processes regarding the method by which work was to be performed; and Chevron set the managers’ work schedules, determined the their rates of pay, provided the equipment needed to perform the work (including laptops, uniforms and email addresses), and required daily reports and attendance at meetings.
Plaintiffs’ motion papers requesting approval of the settlement note that the site managers were not directly employed by Chevron, but rather were paid through a variety of third-party staffing companies, and that they worked 12-hour shifts, sometimes for fourteen consecutive days. They claimed to have been paid a day rate, but did not receive overtime compensation. Under the terms of the settlement, in which Chevron denied any liability, each member of the class group will receive an average of over $29,000, and attorneys’ fees are earmarked for 25% of the of the settlement amount. McQueen v. Chevron Corp., 16-cv-02089 (N.D. Cal. Feb. 8, 2019).