U.S. Department of Labor Obtains Consent Judgment Ordering Pennsylvania Company to Pay $185,456 in Back Wages and Damages
PITTSBURGH, PA – The U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania has entered a consent judgment against Water Transfer Solutions LLC and its president, Joseph Dugan, requiring the defendants to pay $92,728 in back wages and an equal amount in liquidated damages - totaling $185,456 - to 82 current and former employees. The judgment follows an investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor's Wage and Hour Division (WHD) that determined the Canonsburg, Pennsylvania, company violated the overtime and recordkeeping provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).
WHD investigators from the Pittsburgh District Office found that – from July 1, 2017, to December 14, 2017 – Water Transfer Solutions LLC paid employees on a day-rate basis, without regard to the number of hours they worked. This practice resulted in overtime violations when employees worked beyond 40 hours per week and the employer failed to pay them additional half-time. This practice of paying flat day rates also led to recordkeeping violations when the company failed to maintain records of the number of hours employees worked.
"The U.S. Department of Labor is committed to ensuring that employees receive the wages they have earned for all the hours they have worked," said Wage and Hour District Director John DuMont, in Pittsburgh. "Our ongoing enforcement and outreach in the oil and gas industry seeks to identify and remedy such common violations to protect employees, to educate employers, and to ensure a level playing field for law-abiding employers."
Under the consent judgement, in addition to paying the back wages and damages, the defendants are enjoined from violating the FLSA in the future.
"This judgment sends a clear message to employers that failure to pay employees their rightfully earned wages comes at a high cost," said Regional Solicitor Oscar L. Hampton III.
Water Transfer Solutions LLC provides water transfer services for the oil and gas industry.
View the complaint and consent judgment. Employers who discover overtime or minimum wage violations may self-report and resolve those violations without litigation through the PAID program. For more information about the FLSA and other federal wage laws, call the Division's toll-free helpline at 866-4US-WAGE (487-9243). Information also is available at http://www.dol.gov/whd.