United States District Court, S.D. Texas, Corpus Christi Division
GEROME SHAW, et al. Plaintiffs,
JAGUAR HYDROSTATIC TESTING, LLC, Defendant.
Tagle, Senior United States District Judge
Court has before it Plaintiff Gerome Shaw's
(“Shaw”) Opposed Motion for Conditional Class
Certification and Notice in this putative collective action
under the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”), 29
U.S.C. § 201, et seq. Dkt. No. 11. After
considering the motion, the complaint, the accompanying
evidence, the parties' arguments, and the applicable law,
the Court GRANTS Shaw's motion.
August 27, 2015, Shaw filed this FLSA collective action
lawsuit on behalf of himself and all other similarly situated
to recover unpaid overtime wages, liquidated damages,
attorney's fees, and costs owed to current and former
Junior Operators, Operators, Field Operators and Pressure
Testers who worked for Defendant Jaguar Hydrostatic Testing,
LLC, (“Jaguar”) over the past three years.
See generally Compl., Dkt. No. 1.
a former employee of Jaguar who worked as a “Field
Operator/Pressure Tester” for Jaguar from April 2011 to
March 2014. Compl. ¶ 5; Shaw Dec, Dkt. No. 11-1, ¶
1. Jaguar is a Texas limited liability company offering
hydrostatic testing services to oil and gas operators in the
United States. Jaguar has locations in Pennsylvania and
Texas. Dkt. No. 11 at ¶ 5. When Shaw first started work with
Jaguar, he worked exclusively in Pennsylvania. Shaw
Dep., Dkt. No. 35 Ex. E at 29:4-30:5. Over two years
later, he began working in the Midland/Odessa area of Texas.
Id. at 30:11-17. Shaw testified that he would fly to
Texas and work for twenty-one days at a time before returning
to Pennsylvania for nine days. Id. at 50:16-22.
duties included maintaining and servicing oil and gas
production facilities and overseeing the testing and
monitoring of wells, pumps, storage facilities and other
pressure control equipment. Compl. ¶ 5. He
alleges that he was a non-exempt employee, id.
¶ 10, and that Jaguar paid him on a salary basis plus a
day rate (or bonus), but did not pay Shaw overtime for hours
worked over forty hours in a workweek. Id. at ¶
6. Shaw alleges that he often worked in excess of eighty
hours and sometimes in excess of one-hundred hours per week.
Id. at ¶ 10.
alleges that other employees have also been denied overtime
hours in violation of the FLSA. Id. at ¶ 12.
Shaw provides that he “is aware that Defendant made a
regular practice of not paying the required overtime premium
for hours worked over 40 in a workweek, but paid several
different categories of employees on the same basis: salary
plus a day-rate.” Id.
seeks conditional certification of and notice to:
All individuals who were employed by Jaguar Hydrostatic
Testing, LLC. during the past three (3) years as Junior
Operators, Operators, Field Operators and Pressure testers,
who were paid a base salary and a day-rate/job bonus with no
Dkt. No. 11 at ¶ 23 (providing the language of the
also seeks a judgment against Jaguar for an amount equal to
Shaw's and the members of the purported class's
unpaid overtime wages, an amount equal to the overtime wage
damages as liquidated damages (and to the extent that
liquidated damages are not awarded, an award of prejudgment
interest), and all costs and attorney's fees incurred.
Compl. at 5 (Prayer for Relief).
the filing of the lawsuit, six individuals-Diego Alberto Meza
(“D.A. Meza”), Juan Diego Meza (“J.D.
Meza”), Joe Derrick Silos (“Silos”), Frank
Rodriguez (“Rodriguez”), Joe Prado, and Joel
Prado-have filed notices to opt into the lawsuit.
See Dkt. Nos. 3, 10, 21, 39. D.A. Meza declares that
he was a “Junior Operator/Field Operator/Pressure
Tester” from October 2011 to September 2013. D.A.
Meza Dec, Dkt. No. 11 Ex. 2 at ¶ 3. D.A. Meza
worked in Texas and Pennsylvania. D.A. Meza Dep.,
Dkt. No. 35 Ex. A at 36:13-18. J.D. Meza declares that he was
a “Field Operator/Pressure Tester” from October
2011 to September 2013. J.D. Meza Dec, Dkt. No. 11
Ex. 3 at ¶ 3. He worked in Texas and Pennsylvania.
J.D. Meza Dep., Dkt. No. 35 Ex. B at 22:7-17.
Rodriguez declares that he was a “Lubricator/Pressure
Testing Operator” from June 2014 to February 19, 2016.
Dkt. No. 30 Ex. 1 at ¶ 1. He worked in Texas and New
Mexico. Rodrigeuz Dep., Dkt. No. 35 Ex. C at
69:9-11. Shaw did not file declarations of Silos, Joe Prado,
or Joel Prado.
18, 2017, this Court ordered supplemental briefing from
Jaguar asking for:
• The estimated number of employees that fall into the
categories of Junior Operator, Operator, Field Operator, and
Pressure Tester for the three-year period of time for which
Shaw seeks conditional certification.
• The employment classification (“exempt” or
“nonexempt”) of each of the above-mentioned
• The geographic locations in which Jaguar hired each of
the above-mentioned positions.
(July 18, 2017), Dkt. No. 49. The Court also gave Plaintiffs
an opportunity to respond.
FLSA establishes federal minimum-wage, maximum-hour, and
overtime guarantees that cannot be modified by
contract.” Genesis Healthcare Corp. v.
Symczyk, 133 S.Ct. 1523, 1527 (2013). Nonexempt
employees are entitled to overtime pay calculated at one and
one half times their regular rate of pay for all hours worked
in excess of forty in a workweek. 29 U.S.C. § 207
(2016). Section 216(b) creates a cause of action for
employees against employers violating FLSA requirements.
An action . . . may be maintained . . . by any one or more
employees for and in behalf of himself or themselves and
other employees similarly situated. No employee shall be a
party plaintiff to any such action unless he gives his
consent in writing to become such a party and ...