As we have previously reported, on November 22a federal judge in Sherman, Texas,preliminarily enjoined the DOL’s new regulations on white-collar exemptions to the overtime requirement of Fair Labor Standards Act. The DOL appealed to the Fifth Circuit on December 1, the same day that the regulations were to have taken effect.
Apparently envisioning a Trump Administration team with “a moving truck at the door,” the DOL asked for expedited review in the appeal, which was granted on December 8. But even with an expedited hearing, it doesn’t appear that the appeal can be decided before President-Elect Trump takes office on January 20. Secretary of Labor nominee Puzder has said that the new regulation “will simply add to the extensive regulatory maze the Obama Administration has imposed on employers, forcing many to offset increased labor expense by cutting costs elsewhere. In practice, this means reduced opportunities, bonuses, benefits, perks, and promotions.”
Nonetheless, the current DOL filed its brief on December 15, in accordance with the expedited review schedule. In addition, the Texas AFL-CIO filed a motion to intervene, apparently making a judgment that the Trump Administration will not vigorously pursue the appeal. But the labor group’s effort may be futile if the new DOL leadership drops the appeal, as is likely.