Adam C. Abrahms, Member of the Firm in the Employment, Labor & Workforce Management and Health Care & Life Sciences practices, in the firm’s Los Angeles office, was quoted in the Bloomberg BNA Daily Labor Report, in “Labor Board to Continue Tinkering with Union Election Rules,” by Chris Opfer.
Following is an excerpt:
The National Labor Relations Board next year will unveil a new regulation to update the ground rules for union elections, NLRB Chairman John Ring (R) said Oct. 7.
The board is “considering rulemaking regarding changes to the 2014 elections rules, the so-called ‘ambush’ elections,” Ring told a group of labor and employment lawyers in New York. “We are looking right now at different aspects of those election rules that may require some changes and will be addressing those in the coming months.”
The NLRB is widely expected to extend current deadlines established by the Democrat-majority board in the Obama administration, which are meant to streamline the union election process by eliminating certain legal and procedural barriers. Critics say the current setup allows unions to launch surprise attacks by waiting until the last minute to file a petition and demanding that ballot boxes be opened quickly.
The board signaled early in the Trump administration that it wanted to revisit an Obama-era regulation that the business community dubbed the “ambush” or “quickie” election rule. But a proposal to scrap that rule in one fell swoop has remained on the NLRB’s long-term regulatory agenda, since the board asked for public comments in late 2017.
It has in the meantime rolled out proposals to address certain aspects of the union election process, including an employer’s voluntary recognition of a union for bargaining purposes and “blocking” charges often filed by unions to try to delay a likely unfavorable vote.
“I think that the rulemaking that you will see will be fine tuning,” Adam Abrahms, an attorney for Epstein Becker who represents businesses in labor-relations cases, told Bloomberg Law. “Not a wholesale reversion to where we were before the rule, but finding the areas where really there could be improvement.”