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Labor Relations Today

Category Archives: NLRB Decisions

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NLRB Legitimizes Improper Mail Ballot Election Rule Followed by Certain Regional Offices

Posted in NLRB, NLRB Decisions, Representation Elections
For more than 50 years, the Board has maintained a rule for mail ballot elections prohibiting the parties from holding mass campaign meetings on company time (commonly referred to as “captive audience” meetings) with employees “from the time and date on which the ‘mail in’ ballots are scheduled to be dispatched by the Regional Office… Continue Reading

Labor Relations Today Issues ‘Labor Law 2015: Year in Review’

Posted in Alternative Labor Law Reform, Beyond EFCA: Labor's Agenda, Bush Board Reversal, Card Check, Department of Labor, Executive Orders, Expedited Elections, Federal Court Litigation, Government Contracts, House of Representatives, Joint Employer, Legislation, Micro Units, Negotiations, NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Administration, NLRB Decisions, NLRB Rule-Making, Remedies, Representation Elections, SCOTUS, Senate, Social Media, Unfair Labor Practices, Unions, White House
McGuireWoods labor attorneys and the editors of Labor Relations Today are pleased to announce the publication of Labor Law 2015: A Year In Review. For most of 2015, the National Labor Relations Board consisted of five members and the general counsel — all Senate-confirmed. This Board and the White House continued aggressive efforts to overhaul traditional labor law administratively,… Continue Reading

Board Finds Rule Prohibiting Recordings in the Workplace Unlawful

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Decisions
Keeping with its trend of invalidating common workplace rules, the National Labor Relations Board, in a 2-1 decision issued on December 24, 2015 in Whole Foods Market, Inc., 363 NLRB No. 87, found that an employer’s rule prohibiting recording of company meetings or conversations in the workplace violated Section 8(a)(1) of the National Labor Relations… Continue Reading

NLRB Considers Whether to Overrule 11-Year Old Precedent Holding That Graduate Students Are Not Employees Under the NLRA

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Decisions
Earlier this month, we posted about a Regional Director’s dismissal of a petition filed by an organizing committee of the United Auto Workers (UAW) seeking to represent various student assistants at Columbia University in New York.  The UAW has filed a request for review in that case which is currently pending before National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).  In a… Continue Reading

NAM Files Amicus Brief Challenging ALJ Decision Reinstating Racist Employee

Posted in Amici Briefs, NLRB, NLRB Decisions, Picket Line Activity, Unfair Labor Practices
On November 10, 2015, the National Labor Relations Board granted the National Association of Manufacturers’ motion to file an amicus brief in Cooper Tire & Rubber Co., Case No. 8-CA-87155, in which the employer is challenging an administrative law judge’s decision requiring the employer to reinstate an employee who made racist statements on the picket line. The… Continue Reading

Employer Had No Duty to Bargain Over Use of GPS Tracking Device

Posted in Division of Advice, Duty to Bargain, NLRB Decisions, Unfair Labor Practices
The NLRB’s Division of Advice recommended dismissal of an unfair labor practice charge alleging that an employer violated Section 8(a)(5) of the National Labor Relations Act by using a GPS tracking device to investigate an employee without first bargaining with the union. The Division of Advice’s sensible conclusion was based on the specific facts of the case, as normally… Continue Reading

NLRB Regional Director Dismisses Petition by Union Seeking to Represent University Student Teaching and Research Assistants

Posted in Bush Board Reversal, NLRA, NLRB Decisions, Representation Elections
On October 30, 2015, the Regional Director for Region 2 of the National Labor Relations Board dismissed a petition filed by an organizing committee of the United Auto Workers (UAW) seeking to represent various student assistants at Columbia University in New York.  In Columbia University, Case No. 02-RC-143012, the Union sought to represent a unit of [a]ll student… Continue Reading

Fifth Circuit Reverses Board Decision on Lawfulness of Arbitration Agreements Once Again

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Decisions, Uncategorized, Unfair Labor Practices
In Murphy Oil USA, Inc. v. National Labor Relations Board, a three-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit again held, contrary to the NLRB, that an employer does not commit an unfair labor practice by requiring its employees to sign arbitration agreements.  In doing so, the Fifth Circuit followed… Continue Reading

Board Finds That Canvassers Are Employees, Reversing ALJ

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Decisions
Further crystalizing the Board’s efforts to expand the definition of “employee” under the NLRA, the Board recently reversed an ALJ’s decision, holding that canvassers for a non-profit organization were employees, not independent contractors. In Sisters Camelot, 363 NLRB No. 13 (Sep. 25, 2015), a canvasser filed a charge alleging that he was terminated for engaging… Continue Reading

Quick Hits: Monday, September 21, 2015

Posted in Beyond EFCA: Labor's Agenda, Media Round-Up, NLRA, NLRB Decisions, Quick Hits
ICYMI — Dems Intro “WAGE” Act: We reported last week on the drastic legislative proposal introduced to increase NLRB penalties against employers, to facilitate union organizing. In addition to our summary piece and this document including proposed changes to the NLRA in redline, we provided links to some additional resources and coverage. Add to those, this Washington… Continue Reading

National Labor Relations Board Declines to Order Make-Whole Remedy in Twenty Year Old Dues Check-Off Dispute

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Decisions, Remedies
On September 10, 2015, the National Labor Relations Board (the “Board”) ended a twenty (20) year old dispute over union dues deductions. Hacienda Hotel, Inc. Gaming Corp., 363 NLRB No. 7 (Sept. 10, 2015). The Board adopted the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals’ (the “Ninth Circuit”) ruling that the employer violated the National Labor Relations… Continue Reading

Upending a Fifty-Three Year Old Precedent, National Labor Relations Board Holds that an Employer’s Obligation to Deduct Union Dues from Employee Paychecks Continues after the Expiration of a Collective Bargaining Agreement

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Decisions, Unions
On August 27, 2015, the National Labor Relations Board (the “Board”) held that an employer’s obligation to deduct union dues from employee paychecks continues after the expiration of a collective bargaining agreement. Lincoln Lutheran of Racine, Case 30-CA-111099 (Aug. 27, 2015). In doing so, the Board nullified its fifty-three year old Bethlehem Steel, 136 NLRB… Continue Reading

Five Practical Issues Browning-Ferris Creates for Employers

Posted in Joint Employer, NLRA, NLRB Decisions
National Labor Relations Board’s decision in Browning-Ferris Industries of California, Inc., 362 NLRB No. 186 (Aug. 27, 2015), will have significant and far-reaching effects as it greatly expands the scope of relationships in which the Board can and will find entities to be joint employers. While the full ramifications of the Board’s decision remain to be… Continue Reading

NLRB Rewrites Decades-Old Joint Employer Test

Posted in Joint Employer, NLRA, NLRB Decisions, Unfair Labor Practices
Today the National Labor Relations Board issued its long-awaited ruling in Browning-Ferris Industries of California, Inc., 362 NLRB No. 186 (Aug. 27, 2015), a 3-2 decision overruling the NLRB’s prior joint-employer standard adopted in 1984. The Board majority, consisting of Chairman Pearce and Members Hirozawa and McFerran, prefaced its need for revisiting the thirty-year-old standard on the fact that “the… Continue Reading

BOARD FINDS THAT AN EMPLOYEE’S BRIEF SUSPENSION VIOLATED LABOR LAW

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Decisions
In Bellagio, LLC, 362 NLRB No. 175 (Aug. 20, 2015), the National Labor Relations Board concluded that an employer violated the National Labor Relations Act (the “Act”) when it supposedly denied an employee’s request for union representation during a disciplinary interview and also suspended him for refusing to participate in the investigation without union representation.… Continue Reading

NLRB Declines to Assert Jurisdiction Over Northwestern University Football Players

Posted in NLRA, NLRB Decisions, Representation Elections
Inspiring a torrent of “punt”-related puns, the National Labor Relations Board on Monday declined to assert jurisdiction over the unionization effort of scholarship football players at Northwestern University.  In Northwestern University, 362 NLRB No. 167 (Aug. 17, 2015), a unanimous decision of all five Board Members held: …we conclude, without deciding whether the scholarship players are employees… Continue Reading

DC Circuit Invalidates Most of Lafe Solomon’s Tenure as Acting General Counsel

Posted in Federal Court Litigation, NLRB Decisions, Presidential Appointments
On August 7, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia held that Lafe Solomon, the former Acting General Counsel of the National Labor Relations Board, served in violation of the Federal Vacancies Reform Act of 1998 (“FVRA”) from January 5, 2011 to November 4, 2013. In SW General, Inc. v. NLRB, the… Continue Reading

BOARD CONCLUDES THAT AN EXECUTIVE’S “VEILED THREAT” INTERFERED WITH ELECTION

Posted in NLRB, NLRB Decisions
In Student Transportation of America, Inc., 362 NLRB No. 156 (Aug. 3, 2015), the National Labor Relations Board concluded that an executive’s statement, shortly prior to a union election, that the employer “could walk away” from a contract with the proposed bargaining unit’s only client if “operations became too costly” might have tarnished the vote.… Continue Reading

Board Finds Deferral to Arbitration Inappropriate Where Employer Clearly Violated the Express Terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement

Posted in NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Decisions, Uncategorized, Unfair Labor Practices
In Oakland Physicians Medical Center, LLC, 362 NLRB No. 129 (July 22, 2015), the National Labor Relations Board both rejected the employer’s request for deferral to arbitration and found that the employer violated the National Labor Relations Act by making unilateral changes to employee health care coverage, including the premiums paid by the employees, during… Continue Reading

NLRB to Decide Whether It Can Impose Mixed Units of Both Solely and Jointly Employed Workers

Posted in NLRA, NLRB Decisions, Representation Elections
For those that have followed developments in labor law over the years, it should come as no surprise that the National Labor Relations Board is again visiting the issue of whether it can direct a representation election for a unit consisting of both jointly employed temporary workers and regular workers employed solely by the user… Continue Reading

NLRB Sets Aside Election Results Due to Bonuses Paid During Critical Period

Posted in NLRB Decisions, Representation Elections
In SBM Management Services, 362 NLRB No. 144 (July 8, 2015), the National Labor Relations Board held that an employer’s distribution of bonuses to 11 employees in a bargaining unit of approximately 35 employees just days before a vote on union representation violated Section 8(a)(1) of the National Labor Relations Act and ordered that a… Continue Reading

Court of Appeals Reverses Board Decision Allowing Employees to Wear “Inmate,” “Prisoner” Shirts in Customer Homes

Posted in Federal Court Litigation, NLRB Decisions, Unfair Labor Practices
With a subtle introductory rebuke, the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia has reined in one of the National Labor Relations Board’s more outrageous decisions of the past few years.  In Southern New England Telephone Company v. NLRB, No. 11-1099 (D.C. Cir., July 10, 2015), the court vacated the Board’s ruling that the… Continue Reading

The Road Ahead: Top 10 Labor Issues to Watch in the Back Half of 2015

Posted in Amici Briefs, Department of Labor, Executive Orders, Expedited Elections, Federal Court Litigation, Government Contracting, Government Contracts, House of Representatives, Legislation, Micro Units, NLRA, NLRB, NLRB Decisions, NLRB Rule-Making, Persuader Rules, Representation Elections, Senate, State/Local Issues
road ahead1.  Will the Courts Uphold the New Expedited Election Rules? The National Labor Relation Board’s new expedited election rules took effect on April 14, 2015, but not before two lawsuits could be filed seeking to invalidate them in January 2015. The first lawsuit was filed by business groups, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, in… Continue Reading

NLRB Flip Flops, Finds Employer Legally Terminated Employee for Dishonesty

Posted in NLRB Decisions, Unfair Labor Practices
On remand because of the Supreme Court’s ruling in NLRB v. Noel Canning, 134 S.Ct. 2550 (2014), the National Labor Relations Board reversed course in Fresenius USA Manufacturing, Inc., 362 NLRB No. 130 (June 24, 2015), and found that an employer lawfully terminated an employee for dishonesty during an investigation of employee misconduct. The 2015 decision is a stark… Continue Reading