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Employment Law Alert – Obama Era Overtime Rule Struck Down by Federal Judge

September 7, 2017

Obama Era Overtime Rule Struck Down by Federal Judge

On Thursday, a Texas federal judge granted summary judgment striking down the new overtime rule, proposed by the DOL under the Obama administration, which would have raised the salary threshold for overtime-exempt employees to $47,476 per year – more than double the current threshold of $23,660.  U.S. District Judge Amos Mazzant invalidated the rule based on his finding that the DOL had improperly used a salary-level test to determine which workers are exempt from overtime compensation.  Specifically, Judge Mazzant held that the DOL’s new rule attempts to make “overtime status depend predominately on a minimum salary level, thereby supplanting an analysis of an employee’s job duties,” and in doing so, the DOL “fails to carry out Congress’s unambiguous intent.”

Judge Mazzant had previously relied on similar legal grounds in November of 2016, when he granted a nationwide injunction halting the implementation of the new rule.  While the Obama administration initially appealed the injunction, on Tuesday, in light of Judge Mazzant’s recent ruling, the Justice Department asked that the appeal be dismissed – effectively abandoning any attempt to enforce the new rule in its current form.  While this brings an end to the litigation surrounding the proposed new rule, the Trump administration has stated that it would go back to the drawing board to develop different standards governing overtime.  We will keep you apprised of any proposed changes to the overtime rules in the future.

White House Suspends Pay Data Reporting Requirements

The White House Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”) has notified the EEOC that new pay-data collection provisions of the revised EEO-1 form will be suspended in order to review the appropriateness of the revisions under the Paperwork Reduction Act.  The revised EEO-1 form would have gone into effect March 31, 2018, and would have required employers with 100 or more employees to report W-2 wage information and total hours worked for all employees by race, ethnicity and sex.

Though employers are no longer required to supply wage and hour information, the new March 31 EEO-1 reporting deadline will remain in place.  Employers may use the latest version of the EEO-1 form, but can leave the salary information portion blank.  We will keep you updated if and when any further information is released regarding revising the EEO-1 in the future.

The contents of this Alert are for informational purposes only, and do not constitute legal advice. If you have any questions about this Alert, please contact the Shulman Rogers attorney with whom you regularly work or a member of the Shulman Rogers Employment and Labor Law Group.


Gregory D. Grant

Meredith “Merry” Campbell

Joy C. Einstein