Oilfield Mass Layoffs With No Advance Written Notice: Baron and Budd Files Lawsuit Against Energy Company for Failure to Comply with WARN Act

Law Firm Represents Oilfield Workers Terminated in Mass Layoffs

DALLAS (Feb. 11, 2015) – The national law firm of Baron and Budd announced today that it is representing oilfield workers who allege they were terminated by Patterson-UTI Drilling Company, LLC in violation of the Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN). Employees who worked at Patterson Drilling’s Dickinson or Midland facility and were terminated without proper written notice may be eligible to participate in the lawsuit, which was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division (In Re: Case 4:15-cv-00346).

The national law firm of Baron and Budd is representing plaintiffs who worked for Houston-based Patterson Drilling. They claim the company failed to give proper written notice before they were laid off from their jobs as “roughnecks,” or drilling rig workers. The plaintiffs worked at Patterson Drilling facilities in Dickinson, North Dakota and Midland, TX.

The WARN Act became law on February 4, 1989, requiring companies with 100 or more employees to provide a 60-day advance written notice in the event of mass layoffs or plant closings. The Act was designed to provide employees with an adjustment period where they could either search for a new job or obtain training to help them find work in another field.

One plaintiff served in the U.S. Army and participated in several deployments in Iraq. Patterson Drilling recruited him to work on rigs throughout North Dakota, and he commuted from his home in Tennessee on a regular basis to work two-week shifts. It was common for him and other employees to work 80 hours per week drilling oil rigs. He and many other employees were verbally informed on or about January 16, 2015 that they were being immediately terminated. They had not been provided with any prior written notice.

Another plaintiff worked on numerous drilling rigs throughout the Permian Basin in Texas, and was assigned work out of Patterson Drilling’s Midland office. On or about February 5, 2015, he and dozens of other employees working out of the Midland office were abruptly terminated. As with the Dickinson terminations, none of the Midland employees were provided with 60 days advance written notice.

“Consistent with its statements to the Securities and Exchange Commission in connection with its February 5, 2015 8-K filing, we believe Patterson Drilling was aware that it was going to end the employment of hundreds of employees many weeks before those layoffs began. However, Patterson Drilling failed to give any advance written notice of those layoffs pursuant to the WARN Act. Many hard working American families have been hit hard, and out of the blue, due to Patterson Drilling’s actions, and we intend to do all that we can to help them.” said Allen Vaught, manager of the Employment Law Group of the national law firm of Baron and Budd.

If you were an employee of Patterson Drilling and believe you were subject to a mass layoff or plant closing without proper advance written notice,  you may be eligible to join this lawsuit and obtain compensation from your former employer. Please call the national law firm of Baron and Budd at 866-262-1553 or contact us online to learn more.

About Baron & Budd, P.C.

The law firm of Baron & Budd, P.C., with offices in Dallas, Baton Rouge, Austin and Los Angeles, is a nationally recognized law firm with a 35-year history of "Protecting What’s Right" for people, communities and businesses harmed by negligence. Baron & Budd’s size and resources enable the firm to take on large and complex cases. The firm represents individuals and government and business entities in areas as diverse as dangerous pharmaceuticals and medical devices, environmental contamination, the Gulf oil spill, financial fraud, overtime violations, deceptive advertising, automotive defects, trucking accidents, nursing home abuse, and asbestos-related illnesses such as mesothelioma.

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