DOL’S Motion for Stay Pending Appeal of Nationwide Injunction on New Overtime Regulations is Denied

On November 22, 2016, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas issued a nationwide preliminary injunction blocking the Department of Labor’s (“DOL”) amendments to the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act (“FLSA”) that were set to go into effect on December 1, 2016. The preliminary injunction prevents the DOL from enforcing the amendments for the time being and calls into question whether they will ever take effect.

The DOL appealed the entry of the preliminary injunction to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit and filed a motion with the Eastern District of Texas seeking to stay further proceedings before that court pending appeal. However, on January 3, 2017, the Eastern District of Texas denied the DOL’s motion to stay further proceedings. Proceedings before the Eastern District of Texas, which include the plaintiffs’ motion for summary judgment that seeks entry of a permanent injunction, as well as a motion by the Texas AFL-CIO to intervene in the lawsuit, will now continue. Briefing of the DOL’s appeal is scheduled to be completed by January 31, 2017.

In the meantime, implementation of the new amendments remains on hold. Employers should continue to monitor this situation, as a ruling from the Fifth Circuit could reinstate the DOL’s ability to enforce the new amendments. We will continue to watch events closely and advise you of any significant developments. If you have any questions or concerns regarding the DOL amendments or nationwide preliminary injunction please feel free to contact our office.

By: Michael Miles, Esquire
Partner at Brown & Connery, LLP