Changes in EEO/AA rules being blocked
On November 22, 2016, a federal district court judge entered a nationwide injunction blocking, at least temporarily, the implementation of new Department of Labor (DOL) regulations to expand overtime protections for employees by raising the minimum salary required for certain exempt “white-collar” employees under the FLSA. The new regulations were to have gone into effort on December 1, 2016; however, the Court’s actions put those changes on hold. On December 8, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit granted the DOL's request for an expedited briefing schedule in its appeal from the injunction. However, it would be unlikely that a court hearing would occur until after President-elect Trump’s nominee for Secretary of Labor, Andrew Puzder, passes through the Senate nomination process and is confirmed.
Although we do not know the fate of Pudzer’s Senate confirmation or the final decision on the “white collar” exemptions, we do know that until a decision is reached by the appeals court, the new regulations will remain on hold. Employers have no obligation to abide by the updated salary thresholds set forth. We also know that Mr. Puzder is an extremely vocal critic of the new regulations which could suggest that DOL might not decide to pursue the pending appeal of the injunction and possibly even drop its defense of the lawsuit and/or the regulation itself.