Opponents of the Department of Labor's fiduciary rule were dealt another blow Monday when a federal judge in Dallas denied their latest effort to halt its implementation.
Chief Judge Barbara M.G. Lynn of the U.S. District Court for Northern Texas denied the financial trade association plaintiffs' motion for an injunction to stop the regulation, which requires financial advisers to act in the best interests of clients in retirement accounts and will become applicable April 10. The trade groups, which include the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association and the Financial Services Institute, filed their preliminary injunction earlier this month.
The Labor Department has proposed delaying the rule's implementation while the agency conducts an assessment of the regulation, called for by President Donald Trump in a Feb. 3 memo. The DOL received hundreds of letters on the proposed delay through March 17, when the comment period ended.
Ms. Lynn cited four factors in her analysis of whether to grant the injunction. The plaintiffs fell short in each instance, according to the order.
"First, this court has already found the plaintiffs' position on the merits unpersuasive," and two other District Courts have reached the same conclusion in similar cases, she wrote.
The trade groups in their preliminary injunction argued three other points, according to Ms. Lynn.
They would suffer irreparable harm without an injunction due to unrecoverable compliance costs because of the April 10 date of the rule. Next, the DOL itself would not be harmed by an injunction. And finally, the public interest favored granting the injunction.
The trade groups failed to meet the burden to satisfy those four factors required to obtain an injunction, according to Ms. Lynn.
SIFMA spokeswoman Katrina Cavalli and FSI spokesman Chris Paulitz did not return calls to comment.
"Texas judge shoots down latest effort to halt DOL fiduciary rule" originally appeared on InvestmentNews, a sister publication of Pensions & Investments.