Oilfield workers are often paid day rates. Day rates frequently violate the federal overtime law, known as the Fair Labor Standards Act, or FLSA. Department of Labor regulations specifically describe how a worker’s regular rate of pay is to be calculated when day rates are involved. Section 778.112 provides:
Day rates and job rates. If the employee is paid a flat sum for a day’s work or for doing a particular job, without regard to the number of hours worked in the day or at the job, and if he receives no other form of compensation for services, his regular rate is determined by totaling all the sums received at such day rates or job rates in the workweek and dividing by the total hours actually worked. He is then entitled to extra half-time pay at this rate for all hours worked in excess of 40 in the workweek.
So, one would take the total amount a worker received each week, divide it by the total number of hours he worked, and that would be his regular rate of pay. The worker would then be entitled to one-and-a-half times that for each hour he worked above 40 in a week. Because a day rate worker typically does not receive that additional one-and-a-half times his regular rate – based on the DOL regulations and caselaw interpreting it, that is almost always a violation of the FLSA.
The United States Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit recently held that oilfield workers that were paid day rates are not subject to any of the “white collar” exemptions, because a day rate does not constitute a salary, which is requirement for the white collar exemptions to apply.
Josh Borsellino has represented hundreds of employees that were paid day rates on claims for unpaid overtime. He works hard to get workers the overtime pay they deserve. If you or a friend or loved one has been paid day rates without overtime pay within the past three years, call Josh Borsellino at 817.908.9861 or email him here for a free and confidential, no-obligation consultation. Do so as soon as possible, as there are time limitations that may bar your claim if you wait too long.