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States Argue That Texas Court Properly Blocked Overtime Rule

In a legal brief filed on January 17, 2017, the 21 states that obtained a nationwide preliminary injunction that blocks the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) from implementing its revisions to overtime rules under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) urged the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit to uphold that injunction.

State Plaintiffs Urge Fifth Circuit to Affirm Nationwide Injunction Blocking DOL Overtime Rule

In the latest round in the litigation between 21 States, led by the State of Nevada, and the Department of Labor regarding the Final Rule, the State Plaintiffs filed their appeal brief today with the Fifth Circuit, urging the Court to affirm the district court’s order, which issued a nationwide injunction blocking the rule.

FLSA Civil Penalties To Increase Again

For the second time in less than a year, the U.S. Department of Labor will soon publish increases in the civil money penalties it can impose for certain violations of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act and/or related regulations.

Ninth Circuit Rules Service Advisors at Automotive Dealerships Are Not Exempt From Overtime Pay

xecutive Summary: On January 9, 2017, the U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in Navarro v. Encino Motorcars, for the second time, that service advisors at automotive dealerships are not exempt from overtime. In 2015, the Ninth Circuit relied on U.S. Department of Labor regulations to hold that service advisors are not exempt. In June 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court reversed that ruling, finding that the regulations were not entitled to deference, and directed the Ninth Circuit to reconsider the issue without regard to the DOL regulations.

Ninth Circuit Reaffirms Service Advisors Eligible for Overtime, Setting Up Second Potential Trip to Supreme Court

The U.S. Supreme Court in 2016 granted certiorari in Encino Motorcars, LLC v. Navarro to resolve a circuit split regarding whether “service advisors” at automobile dealerships are exempt from receiving overtime under the Fair Labor Standard Act pursuant to an exemption for any “salesman, partsman, or mechanic primarily engaged in selling or servicing automobiles.” The federal appeals court in San Francisco, deferring to a 2011 Department of Labor regulation, had held service advisors are not covered by the exemption and, therefore, are entitled to overtime.

Groundhog Day Comes Early For West Coast Auto Dealers: Another Loss In Service Advisor Exemption Battle

In a disappointing but perhaps unsurprising decision, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals once again ruled that service advisors employed by automobile dealerships do not qualify for the Section 13(b)(10)(A) overtime exemption under the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). For dealers on the west coast, this might sound like a familiar story. In fact, you would be forgiven if you feel like you are reliving an early version of Groundhog Day and hearing the same story once again. You wouldn’t be far off.

2017 State Minimum-Wage Increases

As employers wait to see whether, when, and to what extent the federal Fair Labor Standards Act's minimum wage might increase in the near future, many other jurisdictions have continued to raise their rates to levels higher than the FLSA's current $7.25 an hour. Of course, covered employers must ensure that they are paying not less than the FLSA minimum or any higher required rate(s) applying to their non-exempt workers.

IRS Provides Guidance on Safe Harbor for De Minimis Errors Made on Forms W-2, 1099

The IRS has issued Notice 2017-09, which provides for a safe harbor for filers that have made de minimis errors on certain IRS forms.

Lower-Court FLSA Salary Litigation Will Proceed

Federal District Judge Amos L. Mazzant has denied the U.S. Department of Labor's request to halt proceedings in his court while it appeals the preliminary injunction he granted preventing salary-related changes in the federal Fair Labor Standards Act's "white collar" exemption requirements from taking effect. In the court's view, USDOL failed to demonstrate that such an extraordinary measure was warranted.

OT Exemption Rules Lawsuit Will Proceed Despite Appeal

Judge Amos Mazzant of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas has decided that he will not halt the lawsuit challenging the U.S. DOL’s new overtime exemption rules pending a ruling from the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals on his earlier order temporarily blocking the rules from taking effect.