Recent Blog Posts
- Supreme Court Gives Employers “Epic” Win: Upholding Class Action Waivers in Arbitration Agreements and Rejecting Obama NLRB In Epic Systems Corp. v. Lewis (a companion case to NLRB v. Murphy Oil USA and Ernst & Young v. Morris), the U.S. Supreme Court finally and decisively put to rest the Obama-era NLRB’s aggressive contention that the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) prevented class action waiver in employees arbitration agreements, finding such waivers are both protected by the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) and not prohibited by the NLRA. In its 5-4 decision, the Court explained that the NLRB’s interpretation... More
- Senate Confirms John Ring to Restore Full Five-Member Board On Wednesday, the Senate narrowly confirmed John Ring, a management-side labor attorney from Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP, to the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB” or the “Board”). With this vote, Ring fills the last remaining open seat on the Board, which was previously held by former Chairman Philip Miscimarra. Ring’s term will expire on December 16, 2022. The confirmation vote of 50-48 was largely down party lines, with only two Democrats voting in favor of Ring’s confirmation. The strong... More
- NLRB Reinstates Browning-Ferris Joint-Employer Standard . . . For Now On February 26, 2018, in a unanimous decision by Chairman Marvin Kaplan and Members Mark Pearce and Lauren McFerren, the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB” or the “Board”) reversed and vacated its December 2017 decision in Hy-Brand Industrial Contractors, Ltd. (“Hy-Brand”), which had overruled the joint-employer standard set forth in the 2015 Browning-Ferris Industries (“Browning-Ferris”) decision. The decision followed the release of a finding that a potential conflict-of-interest had tainted the Board’s 3-2 vote. What this means, at least for the... More
- The Supreme Court Holds That Federal Courts Must Interpret Collective Bargaining Agreements in Accordance with “Ordinary Contract Principles;” Rejects So-Called “Yard-Man” Inferences Resolving a split between circuits, this week the United States Supreme Court, in CNH Industrial v. Reese rejected what has come to be known as the Yard-Man standard, and reaffirmed that collective bargaining agreements must be interpreted according ordinary contract principles. Although the Supreme Court has long held ordinary cannons of contract construction apply to collective bargaining agreements, some federal courts developed a specialized set of inferences, known as the Yard-Man inferences, which allowed them to read beyond the actual contract... More
- Is the NLRB’s General Counsel Planning to “Reorganize” the Labor Board’s Regional Directors and Field Offices? Over the past several weeks there have been conflicting reports concerning what The New York Times described as “a proposal” by Peter Robb, who was sworn in as the National Labor Relations Board’s (“NLRB” or the “Board”) General Counsel on November 17, 2017, to “demote” the Board’s Regional Directors and career “senior civil servants who resolve most labor cases,” and transfer their decision making authority to “a small cadre of officials installed above them in the National Labor Relations Board’s hierarchy,” apparently answerable... More
- President to Nominate Management Labor Lawyer John Ring to NLRB The White House has announced that John Ring, co-chair of the Labor & Employment Law practice at a management side law firm, is the President’s choice for the vacancy on the National Labor Relations Board created last month when Board Chairman Phillip Miscimarra completed his term on December 16, 2017. Mr. Ring’s nomination to the Board is subject to Senate confirmation. No date has been set for hearings on the nomination.
The Board is Now Split 2-2
Since Mr. Miscimarra’s departure... More
- NLRB Board Members Signal Intention to Reconsider Board Law on Confidentiality of Settlement Agreements and to Modify the Board’s Blocking Charge “Rule” In footnotes to two recent unpublished NLRB decisions, NLRB Chairman Marvin Kaplan, who was named to that role by the President following the December 16, 2017 conclusion of Philip Miscimarra’s term, and Member William Emanuel offered interested observers an indication of two additional areas of Board law that they believe warrant reconsideration once Mr. Miscimarra’s replacement is nominated and confirmed, and the Board returns to a 3-2 Republican majority.
While unpublished Board decisions “are not intended or appropriate for publication and... More
- TRUMP NLRB STRIKES BACK: NLRB Restores Balance to Labor Relations – Overturning Divisive Obama Board Micro-Unit and Unilateral Change Decisions Last Friday – the day the Star Wars movie Episode VIII hit theaters and the last working day of National Labor Relations Board Chairman Philip A. Miscimarra’s term – the Board continued its efforts to undo some of the most controversial and problematic decisions rendered by the Obama Board before the Republicans temporarily lose their majority. As we previously reported, recent days have seen a stream of significant decisions and other actions from the National Labor Relations Board. Most notably,... More
- NLRB Reverses Key Rulings: New Test for Determining Whether Handbooks, Rules and Policies Violate the NLRA and Return to Pre-Obama Board Test for Deciding Joint-Employer Status and – Assessment of 2014 Expedited Election Rules and Future Changes Also Announced It should come as no surprise that recent days have seen a stream of significant decisions and other actions from the National Labor Relations Board as Board Chairman Philip A. Miscimarra’s term moves towards its December 16, 2017 conclusion and as a new majority has recently taken shape with the confirmation of Members Marvin Kaplan and William Emanuel. Chairman Miscimarra, while he was in a minority of Republican appointees from his confirmation during July 2013 until last month, has clearly and... More
- NLRB General Counsel Peter Robb Issues “Mandatory Submissions to Advice Memo,” Outlining His Approach and Identifying Direction to Come Peter B. Robb, the newly sworn in General Counsel of the National Labor Relations Board has issued a memorandum, Mandatory Submissions to Advice, GC Memo 18-02 (the “Mandatory Submissions Memo”), that offers clear information as to how he is likely to proceed in setting the agenda and priorities for the Office of the General Counsel which is “responsible for the investigation and prosecution of unfair labor practice cases and for the general supervision of the NLRB field offices in the... More