Trump administration won't defend DOL overtime rule

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Federal officials' fight to enact an overtime rule that long-term care providers have dreaded won't be continued by the new administration, according to court documents filed Friday.

The rule, introduced in May 2016 by the Obama administration, would have more than doubled the salary threshold for overtime exemptions, making 4.2 million more workers eligible for overtime compensation. While long-term care providers acknowledged that an update to the threshold was appropriate, they called the new $47,476 threshold “drastic” and said it could harm skilled nursing facilities.

The overtime rule was stopped late last year by an injunction from the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, which was soon followed by an appeal by the Department of Labor, as well as a lawsuit from states and business advocates claiming regulators had overreached with the rule.

The government's appeal was effectively dropped on Friday, with the submission of a court brief by the DOL in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit requesting the court approve its authority to set a new — and, as HR Dive reported, likely lower — salary threshold.

The DOL is now expected to publish a request for public comments that will help develop a new overtime rule proposal, according to federal officials.

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