Adam Abrahms, Steve Swirsky Quoted in “Deauthorize, Don’t Decertify”

Bloomberg BNA Daily Labor Report

Adam C. Abrahms and Steven M. Swirsky, Members of the Firm in the Employment, Labor & Workforce Management and Health Care & Life Sciences practices, in the firm’s Los Angeles and New York offices, respectively, were quoted in the Bloomberg BNA Daily Labor Report, in “Deauthorize, Don’t Decertify,” by Chris Opfer and Jaclyn Diaz. (Read the full version – subscription required.)

Following is an excerpt:

Recent moves out of the NLRB and from General Counsel Peter Robb have some folks on the management side thinking the time might be right to help some workers give their unions the boot. First, Robb took some of the edge off one legal tool unions use to slow things down when workers move to decertify—or disband—a union. Then a pair of board members signaled that the NLRB might revisit restrictions on how soon after a union wins representation workers can force a decertification vote.

But first thing’s first. Epstein Becker lawyers Steve Swirsky and Adam Abrahms recently told me they expect to see more workers moving to “deauthorize” unions. In states that don’t have “right-to-work” laws, unions can require workers in a collective bargaining unit who choose not to join the union to still pay “fair share” fees for bargaining costs. A deauthorization election allows workers to vote to scrap those fees.

“I think you could start to see more deauthorizations,” Abrahms said. “The rules for deauthorization—when they can be filed, how they can be filed—are so much broader.”

Deauthorization could be a particularly attractive option for anti-union advocacy groups, Swirsky said.

“For the groups that are focusing on unhappy employees, I think deauthorizations will move up on the list.”