• Obama Era Overtime Rule Struck Down by Federal Judge
  • October 2, 2017 | Authors: John D. Clifford; Gregory D. Grant; Meredith Merry Campbell; Joy C. Einstein
  • Law Firms: Shulman, Rogers, Gandal, Pordy & Ecker, P.A. - Washington Office; Shulman, Rogers, Gandal, Pordy & Ecker, P.A. - Potomac Office
  • 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.