Earlier this year, the Department of Labor issued its Final Overtime Expansion Rule. The Final Rule purported to amend, among other things, the Fair Labor Standard Act’s “white collar” exemption by raising the salary threshold to $47,476, effective December 1, 2016. As of that date, employees making less than that annual amount would be covered by the FLSA’s minimum wage and overtime requirements. Some analysts estimated that the DOL rule would impact some 4.2 million workers currently classified as exempt under the white collar rule who make less than the new threshold salary. On September 20, 2016, more than 50 business groups and 21 states sued the DOL in the Eastern District of Texas to block implementation of the rule.
This afternoon, Judge Amos L. Mazzant issued an Order granting the plaintiffs’ Emergency Motion for a Preliminary Injunction, precluding the DOL from enforcing the Final Rule on a nationwide basis. In his Order, Judge Mazzant ruled that the DOL’s Final Rule raising the minimum salary requirement for the white collar exemption is “unlawful” and “contrary to the statutory text [of the FLSA] and Congress’s intent.” Accordingly, Judge Mazzant enjoined the DOL from implementing and enforcing the Final Rule pending further order of the court. The DOL is expected to appeal the Order to the Fifth Circuit.
The case is entitled State of Nevada et al v. United States Department of Labor et al., Docket No.: 4:16-cv-00731-ALM. A copy of Judge Mazzant’s Order is linked here.