District Court Upholds ESG Rule Based on Chevron, Rejecting Application of “Major Questions” Doctrine
In State of Utah v. Walsh, 2:23-CV-016-Z, 2023 WL 6205926 (N.D. Tex. Sep. 21, 2023), twenty-six states and a number of private parties (“plaintiffs”) sought to overturn the United States Department of Labor’s (“DOL’s”) latest environmental, social, and governance (“ESG”) investment rule (“Rule”) issued pursuant to the DOL’s administrative authority under the Employment Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (“ERISA”). In upholding the Rule, the district court rejected in a footnote plaintiffs’ attempt to invoke the major questions doctrine, offering guidance as to the types of cases in which courts are more likely to apply the doctrine following the United States Supreme Court’s decision last year in West Virginia v. EPA (2022).
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