The U.S. Supreme Court in Students for Fair Admissions, Inc. v. President and Fellows of Harvard College decided that the race-based admissions programs at Harvard College and the University of North Carolina (the “Schools”) violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. While the Court answered the question for publicly funded schools, it is an open question whether, and how, the Court’s decision will impact affirmative action and diversity programs for private employers, as discussed in more detail below.Continue Reading How The U.S. Supreme Court’s Ruling On College Affirmative Action Programs May Impact Private Employers

Employers who conduct background checks on applicants or employees must comply with the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), 15 U.S.C. § 1681 et seq. Among other things, the FCRA requires employers who procure criminal background reports (“consumer reports”) to provide applicants and employees with a Summary of Rights form as prepared by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) when providing them with the FCRA-required pre-adverse action notices. See 15 U.S.C. § 1681b(b)(3)(A)(ii).
Continue Reading Compliance Update for U.S. Employers Conducting Criminal Background Checks in the Hiring Process

On December 16, 2022, a National Labor Relations Board (Board) majority (Members Kaplan and Ring) issued a Decision and Order holding that an employer’s conduct did not warrant setting aside a union election where the employer failed to strictly adhere to regulations requiring employers to provide unions a voter list comprised of employee names and contact information (commonly known as an Excelsior list).
Continue Reading Common Sense Wins the Day (sort of) in Board Ruling Concerning Substantial Regulatory Compliance

Earlier this year, the Office of the General Counsel (GC) of the  National Labor Relations Board (Board) issued an Advice Memorandum in Case 05-CA-281089 instructing Board Region 5  to issue a complaint alleging  that the employer, LT Transportation (a shuttle bus transportation provider), violated Section 8(a)(1) of the National Labor Relations Act, when it banned nonemployee union organizers from boarding its shuttles because of their identity as union organizers.
Continue Reading NLRB GC Advocates for Limiting Employer’s Private Property Rights

In December of 2020, the DOL under President Trump issued a final rule dispensing with the longstanding “80/20” tip credit rule—whereby an employer was only required to pay a tipped-employee the full minimum wage rate for non-tip producing work if the employee spent in excess of 20% of their workweek performing such work. In early 2021, the DOL under President Biden delayed the effective date of the Trump-era rule (initially until April 30, 2021, then again until December 31, 2021).
Continue Reading DOL Resurrects 80/20 Tip Rule; Now With More Bite

On June 1, 2021, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit overturned a NLRB determination that a manager’s incorrect blaming of a union for discrepancies in an employee’s paid-leave time constituted an unfair labor practice. The pivotal issue was whether the manager’s statements had a reasonable tendency to interfere with employees’ labor rights. As discussed below, the D.C. Circuit rejected the NLRB’s determination that the manager’s statements had a reasonable tendency to interfere with employees’ labor rights, reasoning that the manager’s misstatements were lawful expressions of the employer’s opinions.
Continue Reading D.C. Circuit Clarifies Boundaries of Protected Employer Expressions

It is early in 2021 and already the NLRB has before it ALJ determinations that employee handbook policies conflict with the NLRA. When analyzing employee handbook policies, the Board generally applies the Boeing test, whereby a handbook policy’s potential interference with employee rights under the NLRA is balanced against an employer’s legitimate justifications for the policy, when viewing the policy from the employee’s perspective. While the NLRA and the Boeing test apply to a number of employee handbook policies, confidentiality, social media, and solicitation/distribution policies are especially vulnerable.
Continue Reading It’s Time Again for Employers to Ensure Handbook Compliance