On December 20, 2011, the National Labor Relations Board (the “Board”) finalized what is being referred to by some critics as the “ambush election rule,” following its contentious November 30, 2011 2-1 vote in favor of its proposed revisions to the procedures by which it conducts workplace elections to determine whether employees do or do not wish to unionize.

Continue Reading NLRB Publishes New Ambush Election Rule In Time For Christmas; Faces Court Challenge From Business Groups

On May 21st, we reported on the newly-announced Department of Labor (“DOL”) proposal to narrow the “advice exception” to the reporting requirements of section 203 of the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act (“LMRDA”).  In a nutshell, section 203 requires employers to annually report any arrangement with a third-party consultant to persuade employees as to their rights to organize and bargain collectively or to obtain certain information concerning the activities of employees or a labor organization involved in a labor dispute with the employer.  The “advice exception” of section 203(c) provides that no annual report need be filed when a consultant gives “advice” to the employer.  DOL’s current policy is to construe this exception broadly to exclude arrangements where the consultant has no direct contact with employees, but DOL now views this policy as overbroad and seeks to narrow it through rulemaking, as outlined in its Spring 2010 Regulatory Agenda.

Continue Reading Update On DOL’s Proposal To Narrow The “Advice Exception” To LMRDA Reporting Requirements

In a move sure to draw fire from Republican lawmakers and segments of the business community, President Obama on Saturday issued recess appointments to place controversial candidates on the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB”) and the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”).  Presidents have constitutional authority to fill vacancies without the advice and consent of the Senate when Congress is in recess, as it is now.

Continue Reading President Makes Controversial Recess Appointments To NLRB And EEOC

The Obama Administration recently proposed requirements to ensure that U.S. companies keep more extensive records of repetitive stress and other types of workplace injuries.  This is one of several signs that employers will face more regulation related to “ergonomics,” or the design and functioning of work spaces, equipment, and tasks in such a manner as to avoid such injuries.

Continue Reading Telling Signs That Ergonomic Regulations Are Making A Comeback