A Colorado federal judge last week approved a $2 million settlement between J&A Services LLC and oil field workers who claimed they were wrongly misclassified as independent contractors and not properly paid for overtime work.

Under the settlement, 71 workers who monitor oil and gas wells in Colorado, North Dakota, Pennsylvania and Texas will receive payouts that range from several hundred dollars to more than $55,000, based on each individual’s invoiced hours.

J&A Services, based in Grand Junction, Colorado, didn’t admit any wrongdoing or liability in the case.

The parties said they wanted to settle to avoid litigation.

The claimants alleged that J&A Services violated the federal Fair Labor  Standards Act “by misclassifying a portion of their workforce  as independent contractors and failing to pay the correct amount of overtime for hours worked in excess of forty hours in a workweek.”

Lawyers for the oil workers collected $800,000 from the $2 million settlement fund to cover attorneys’ fees.

U.S. federal court judge Raymond P. Moore approved the settlement on April 8.


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