The Employment Law Alliance (ELA), the world’s largest network of labor, employment and immigration lawyers, with member firms in all 50 U.S. states, is encouraged by the decision by Judge Sam Cummings of U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas in National Federation of Independent Business et al. v. Perez et al., granting a preliminary injunction that puts enactment of the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) “Persuader Rule” on hold.
The “Persuader Rule” is a regulation requiring employers and legal consultants to publicly disclose any arrangement to persuade employees, either directly or indirectly, regarding the right to organize or bargain collectively. It was set to go into effect July 1.
The Texas decision follows an opinion issued on June 24 by Judge Patrick J. Schiltz of the U.S. District Court for the District of Minnesota in Labnet Inc., et al. v. U.S. Department of Labor, et al. upholding the “Persuader Rule,” but noting that the regulation, over time and with new challenges, was unlikely to survive given that portions likely conflict with its governing law, the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act (LMRDA). ELA member firm Shawe Rosenthal LLP was a lead plaintiff in this matter.
The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas has yet to issue a decision in its “Persuader” lawsuit, Associated Builders and Contractors of Arkansas v. Perez. ELA member firm Cross, Gunter, Witherspoon and Galchus, P.C. (CGWG) represents the suit’s lead plaintiff. In support and in solidarity against the “Persuader Rule,” eleven ELA member firms filed an amicus curiae brief supporting CGWG.
Despite disagreement between circuit courts, Texas’ injunction effectively blocks enactment of the “Persuader Rule” and leaves the future of the regulation in doubt. Given this latest development, the DOL’s next step may be to file an appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.
J. Bruce Cross, director at Cross, Gunter, Witherspoon and Galchus, P.C. commented, “This injunction allows employers to breathe a sigh of relief, knowing that their rights of freedom of speech and freedom of association have been preserved, for now.”
About the Employment Law Alliance:
The Employment Law Alliance is the world's largest network of labor, employment and immigration lawyers. With specialists in more than 135 countries, all 50 states and each Canadian province, the ELA provides multi-state and multi-national companies with seamless and cost-effective services worldwide.