Texas Judge Blocks DOL Persuader Rule with Nationwide Permanent Injunction

persuaderOn November 16, 2016, a Texas federal judge permanently blocked the U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) from enforcing its persuader rule in National Federation of Independent Business, et al. v. Thomas E. Perez, et al., Case No. 5:16-CV-066-C.  As we previously reported in a prior post, when the DOL published the final rule in March 2016, it imposed substantial reporting obligations on employers.  The old rule required disclosure of the use of an outside consultant if the consultant engaged in direct persuader activity, such as if the consultant directly communicates with employees about union representation.  The new rule, however, added reporting for indirect persuader activities; for example, providing communication materials to an employer to hand out to employees.  These types of activities typically, but not exclusively, arise in the context of a union organizing drive.

The DOL’s insistence on imposing stricter reporting requirements on employers stems from what the DOL perceived as a loophole in the Labor Management Reporting Continue reading

Deadline Fast Approaching to Report Paid Agreements Under DOL’s “Persuader Rule”

Department of LaborUpdate:  June 27, 2016

The DOL has been ordered by a federal  court not to enforce the Persuader Rule on a national basis after July 1, 2016 because the court was persuaded (sorry for the pun) that the rule would cause irreparable harm to business groups.

 

Had the final rule not been enjoined, after July 1, 2016, in accordance with the DOL’s Persuader Rule, all employers will be required to report financial agreements with consultants and attorneys retained to give advice that could be viewed as efforts to “persuade” workers on union-related matters.

As we reported when the DOL published the final rule in March 2016, the new rule imposes substantial reporting obligations on employers.  The old rule required reporting if the consultant engaged in direct persuader activity, such as if the consultant directly communicates with employees about union representation.  The new rule adds reporting for indirect persuader activities; for example, when providing communication materials to employer to hand out to employees.  These activities typically, but not exclusively, arise in the context of a union organizing drive.  The final rule provided that it applies to “arrangements and agreements as well as payments (including reimbursed expenses) made on or after” July 1.

But, in an important development, the DOL has recently interpreted its new Persuader Rule Continue reading