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November 21, 2016

MSCI Victory: Texas Judge Issues Permanent Injunction Against DOL’s Persuader Rule

Last Wednesday, in the case brought by the National Federation of Independent Business and several other business organizations, Judge Samuel Cummings from the Northern District of Texas’ Lubbock division issued a permanent injunction against the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) persuader rule. (Judge Cummings had issued a temporary injunction against the rule earlier this year.) 

Because the incoming Trump administration would likely withdraw any federal government appeal of Judge Cummings’ decision, it is likely this harmful regulation will never take effect. 

The Coalition for the Democratic Workplace (CDW), of which the Metals Service Center Institute (MSCI) is a member, filed an amicus brief that, among other things, argued the proposed regulation violated employers’ free speech rights. As a reminder, the DOL’s persuader rule made significant changes to the reporting and disclosure requirements for employers, attorneys, and other experts under the Labor Management Reporting and Disclosure Act. The rule effectively made all interactions between employers and their labor counsel reportable, thereby limiting employer access to counsel. 

The DOL may appeal the decision, but labor lawyers told The Wall Street Journal  “an appeal would be unlikely to save the rule because President-elect Donald Trump’s incoming administration likely wouldn’t support it in the courts.” The incoming administration could simply withdraw the appeal once the new president took office. Regardless of an appeal, with its partners at CDW, MSCI will continue to urge the courts, Congress, and the new administration to end this rule permanently. 

To learn more about the persuader rule, visit CDW’s website or check out Connecting the Dots’ March explanation of the rule.