A federal district court has agreed to fast-track a lawsuit challenging the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) new overtime regulation. It has scheduled oral arguments for November 16, just 2 weeks ahead of the rule’s December 1 effective date.
The rule will more than double the salary threshold for employees eligible for overtime. Employees earning less than $913 per week (which amounts to $47,476 annually) will have to be classified as nonexempt from the Fair Labor Standards Act’s (FLSA) overtime requirements, regardless of whether they meet any of the law’s duties tests.
Twenty-one states filed a lawsuit last month, alleging that DOL exceeded its authority. A few weeks later, they requested an emergency injunction that would temporarily halt the rules and also asked the court to expedite oral arguments.
The court granted the second request, scheduling arguments for a Wednesday, just 2 weeks before the rules take effect.
We continue to recommend that employers move forward with implementation—and soon. Some have suggested that employers make any necessary changes well before December. Tammy McCutchen, an attorney with Littler Mendelson P.C. and former administrator of DOL’s Wage and Hour has repeatedly recommended that employers implement any necessary changes during Thanksgiving week because the effective date falls on a Thursday.
Adopting the changes at least few days early would allow employers to avoid reclassifying an employee as nonexempt in the middle of a workweek, which could create wage and hour problems, she said.
Give us a call if we can help you meeting the looming deadline.