Recent Posts
The Legal Stuff
BT Labor Relations - Current News and Practical Analysis
0

01 Dec 2015 Problems Persist With Teamsters’ Central State Pension Plan

  Most private sector employers do not offer defined benefit pension programs these days given the enormous costs they can impose. In addition, many pension plans currently in existence are severely underfunded, which means retirees drawing benefits – or future retirees planning to do so – may not get what they thought they would. The Teamsters’ Central State Pension Plan is one major pension fund that currently is facing financial difficulty. In fact, the U.S….

READ MORE
0

04 Nov 2015 NLRB Issues Updated Bench Book for ALJs

The NLRB recently issued an updated “Bench Book” for its administrative law judges (ALJs) to use during NLRB administrative trials. The Bench Book is used as a reference guide by ALJs for evidentiary and procedural issues, and it includes references to NLRB precedent that may affect proceedings.  The last version of the Bench Book was issued in 2010, so the 2015 version has nearly five years of case law updates, as it has case cites…

READ MORE
0

11 Aug 2015 More NLRB Cases May Be In Jeopardy Based On DC Circuit’s Ruling Invalidating Most Of Former GC’s Tenure

Last week, the DC Circuit Court of Appeals issued a ruling in a case that potentially calls into question many NLRB cases that were initiated by the board’s former General Counsel (GC), Lafe Solomon. The court evaluated whether Solomon’s service in the GC role violated the Federal Vacancies Reform Act (FVRA).   Solomon initially was appointed to temporarily fill the role in June 2010; was formerly nominated by President Obama to fill the position in…

READ MORE
0

16 Jul 2015 No Good Deed Goes Unpunished: Teamsters Sue Airline…FOR PAYING OUT EMPLOYEE BONUSES!

In an unusual move last week, the Teamsters union sued a regional airline in Indianapolis because the company, without bargaining, allegedly paid out bonuses to the pilots the union represents, and also allegedly started offering higher pay rates than what was contained in the parties’ collective bargaining agreement. Technically, employers must bargain any changes to terms and conditions of union employees’ employment – whether favorable or unfavorable. As a practical matter, however, most unions do…

READ MORE
0

13 Jul 2015 Fees For Union Services Still Prohibited In “Right-to-Work States”… At Least For Now

As previously reported on the blog, the NLRB was planning on revisiting its precedent that makes it illegal for unions to charge “fees” to non-dues paying members in right-to-work states for processing grievances and other “services” the unions may provide. Unions often refer to these as “fair share” fees. The issue was before the board in the case United Steel, Paper and Forestry  Rubber, Manufacturing, Energy, Allied Industrial and Service Workers International Union, Local 1192…

READ MORE
0

16 Jun 2015 NLRB Reaches Agreement With The Republic Of Colombia To Educate Colombian Citizens On The NLRA

Following up on agreements the NLRB has entered into with the embassies of Mexico, the Philippines and Ecuador, the NLRB entered into an agreement with the Republic of Colombia on June 11, 2015, in which they will seek to educate Colombian workers, employers and business owners within the United States on their respective rights and obligations under the NLRA.  The goal is to reach Colombians nationwide and to develop training and opportunities to share information….

READ MORE
0

20 May 2015 NLRB Continues Assault On Employer Arbitration Agreements

On Monday, May 18, an administrative law judge (ALJ) for the National Labor Relations Board held a company violated the National Labor Relations Act by creating an arbitration program that effectively precluded employees from bringing class action lawsuits against the employer. Interestingly, the arbitration agreement at issue was silent on whether employees “waived” their ability to bring class action lawsuits against the company – unlike other agreements found unlawful by the Board that contained express…

READ MORE
0

21 Apr 2015 Unions Get Free Pass From The NLRB When It Comes To Facebook Postings?

Anyone who follows this labor blog (or even remotely monitors labor relations issues) knows employers have been getting hammered by the NLRB in recent years for disciplining employees for making inappropriate comments on Facebook (as well as maintaining policies meant to deter such conduct). So what happens if a union allows illegal content to be posted on its Facebook page? Does it face the same level of scrutiny that an employer would? Unfortunately, it appears…

READ MORE
0

24 Mar 2015 NLRB Scrutiny Of Employer Handbook Policies Continues With ALJ Ruling Against T-Mobile

Last week, an administrative law judge (ALJ) for the NLRB continued the Board’s trend of invalidating employer handbook policies. In the case at issue, the ALJ specifically found that T-Mobile maintained several policies in its handbook that “chilled” potential union activity, including a statement that provided, “This Handbook is a confidential and proprietary Company document, and must not be disclosed to or used by any third party without the prior written consent of the Company.”…

READ MORE
0

24 Feb 2015 County Right-to-Work Laws In Kentucky Already Yielding Increased Job Growth

  As previously reported on this blog, several counties in Kentucky recently passed their own Right-to-Work laws that prohibit companies and unions within their borders from requiring union dues as a condition of employment. In just a few short months, one of those counties, who previously was losing out on opportunities to attract more jobs, already seems to be seeing benefits from its new law in the form of job creation. As the article below…

READ MORE