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BT Labor Relations - Current News and Practical Analysis
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20 Feb 2018 Scrutinized: Congressional Members Questioning Agenda of New NLRB GC

  In just over three months into his tenure as the National Labor Relations Board’s General Counsel, Peter Robb has made significant waves. First came a sweeping memo on Dec. 1, 2017, in which Robb identified cases of significance where his office may be seeking changes to NLRB precedent, such as cases involving “joint-employers” and employee use of employer email systems. Next came his announcement that he is considering “reorganizing the agency’s 26 regional offices…

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19 Feb 2018 Does Misclassifying Employees As Independent Contractors Violate Labor Law?

  Whether it be the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), the Department of Labor (DOL), or state unemployment or workers’ compensation agencies, employee versus independent contractor status always is a hot issue. Missteps by employers in this area can result in back taxes, penalties, and more. The question has been looming, however, whether the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) also would be throwing itself into the misclassification analysis fray with other agencies. Specifically, the board previously…

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16 Feb 2018 Prior Administration Board Decisions Still Matter

  There has been a great deal of discussion and internet content over the impact that a new and fully constituted NLRB could have on critical labor issues – and for good reason.   The Board in the last several years handed down multiple decisions on key issues that turned decades of precedent on its head.  It only makes sense that a more “pro-employer” trend due to the changes in administration would have companies excited at…

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15 Feb 2018 ‘Mean Girls’: Union Violated Labor Law By ‘Ostracizing’ and ‘Humiliating’ Its Own Members On Facebook, Says NLRB GC

  In what reads like a storyline from a movie portraying bullying at a high school, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has just released an Advice Memo from its General Counsel’s office finding that Teamsters Local Union 610 violated the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) by setting up a “secret” Facebook group that ostracized and humiliated some if its own members.   At issue in the case was a facility where the Teamsters had negotiated…

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14 Feb 2018 Board’s New Boeing Test Still Blocks Separation Agreements

    A National Labor Relations Board Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) has taken the first whack at applying the Board’s new test in Boeing.  He concluded that terms included in a university medical center’s separation agreements were phrased in such broad terms that they interfered with employee rights under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA).   The ALJ focused on two terms of the separation agreements that Baylor University Medical Center had offered to 27…

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09 Feb 2018 Slimming Down? NLRB Considering Slashing Headcount

  Even more significant change appears to be on the horizon at the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). According to a new report by Bloomberg BNA, the agency is considering reducing significant headcount in anticipation of major cuts to the board’s operating budget. NLRB General Counsel Peter Robb told a group in New York on Feb 6. that “If we’re going to have a lower budget, it’s going to have to come in substantial part…

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07 Feb 2018 Can You Require Employees To Keep Harassment And Other Workplace Investigations “Confidential”?

  The wave of harassment claims sweeping the nation recently has spawned countless workplace investigations. But can companies require employees to keep such investigations “confidential” (i.e., direct employees to refrain from discussing an investigation while its ongoing)? The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), unfortunately, has placed limits on employers’ – both union and non-union alike – ability to do so.   Specifically, in a 2015 decision – Banner Health System, 362 NLRB No. 137 (June…

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06 Feb 2018 NLRB Issues Updated “Bench Book” for its Judges

  The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), like many federal agencies, has its own division of “administrative law judges” that preside over cases brought to the agency. In fact, the NLRB takes most of its actions through individual case adjudication versus administrative rulemaking.   On Feb. 2., the NLRB announced that its Judges Division issued an updated “Bench Book,” which provides guidance to the board’s administrative law judges in terms of running unfair labor practice…

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05 Feb 2018 On the Hook: NLRB Forces Hotel to Pay Union’s Attorney’s Fees Related to Boycott Spat

  Companies, rightfully so, detest negative publicity, especially when it comes to things like organized consumer boycotts. Unfortunately, the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) protects a union’s right, to some extent, to organize such boycotts in furtherance of its objectives. Employers interfering with lawful union-sponsored boycotts can face significant legal consequences, as demonstrated by a recent case issued by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB).   On Feb. 1, the NLRB issued its decision in…

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01 Feb 2018 Second Time’s the Charm? NLRB to Reconsider Lawfulness of Restaurant’s Work Rules Under New Standard

  Employers received great news from the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) late last year when the agency announced that it was revising its standard for evaluating the lawfulness of employer personnel policies under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA), and that ruling – a ruling that likely will result in more workplace policies being upheld – appears to already be paying dividends.   On Jan. 29, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C….

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