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Oil field services company settles its second wage lawsuit

By BY JESSICA PRIEST - JPRIEST@VICAD.COM
Feb. 20, 2013 at 5:02 p.m.
Updated Feb. 19, 2013 at 8:20 p.m.


An oil-field services company settled its second wage-related lawsuit outside of court Wednesday.

Gate Guard Services agreed to pay eight service technicians each $1,200.

The technicians filed suit in Corpus Christi federal court last summer alleging Gate Guard Services were not paying them overtime.

This case came two years after services rendered and was originally a part of a legal battle with the U.S. Department of Labor, which said Gate Guard Services owed more than $6 million in back wages and needed to reclassify its gate attendants as employees, not independent contractors.

The U.S. Department of Labor dropped the reclassification of the service technicians part of the case before the dispute was resolved and Michael Galo, an Dallas attorney, began representing the group, Gate Guard Services' attorney Daniel Pipitone said previously.

The case involving the gate attendants ended last week after Victoria Federal Judge John D. Rainey ruled in favor of the small business. Gate attendants, which log vehicles as they enter and depart drilling sites, can continue to be contract workers, which don't receive benefits, such as health insurance and retirement, he said.

Gate Guard Services classifies its service technicians as employees, Pipitone said previously.

Neither Galo nor Pipitone and his co-counsel Annette Idalski could be reached for comment Wednesday.

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