Several of our recent posts have addressed the sharp criticism directed towards President Obama in response to his recent recess appointments to the NLRB.  A new case filed in the Eastern District of New York may result in one of the first court rulings involving a challenge to the President’s authority to have made the appointments.  In Paulsen v. Renaissance Equity Holdings, LLC, No. 1:12-cv-00350-BMC, a case in which the NLRB is seeking a federal court injunction to declare an end to an employer lockout, the Defendant is contesting the action on the grounds that because three of the Board’s five members have not been validly appointed, the Board has no authority to act.
Continue Reading New York Case Challenges President Obama’s NLRB Appointments

Two significant developments last week affect the functioning of the country’s federal agency in charge of overseeing union-management relations. The first is a decision by the US Supreme Court and the second is the resignation of the agency’s general counsel effective June 18th.

As a result of political disagreements over nominations to fill vacancies on the National labor Relations Board, the Board operated with only two of its five members during 2008, 2009 and into 2010.  During that time, the two members decided almost 600 cases (though most were not particularly controversial from the standpoint of illuminating policy or setting precedent).  On June 17, the Supreme Court ruled in New Process Steel v. National Labor Relations Board, No. 08-1457, that the two members did not have the authority to decide those cases because they did not constitute a proper quorum under the National Labor Relations Act.  Instead, the Court ruled that at least three sitting Board members were required for the NLRB to act.  The ruling nullifies the decisions made in all 600 cases and effectively remands the cases back to the Board for re-adjudication.Continue Reading Supreme Court Nullifies 600 NLRB Decisions; General Counsel Meisburg Leaves The Agency