On April 14, the National Labor Relations Board changed its rules for processing union elections. The new rules stack the deck against employers by decreasing the time between the filing of a petition and the election, which means that an employer now has less time to educate its employees about the potential impacts of unionization.
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As noted yesterday in our post, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia’s decision to strike down the National Labor Relations Board’s “quickie” election rules was based on a highly technical analysis.  Specifically, the Court found that the Board failed to obtain a proper quorum of at least three Board Members because of Republican Member Brian Hayes’ limited involvement in the rulemaking process.  However, the Court indicated that the Board might have authority to issue the quickie election rules if it musters a legally recognized quorum.


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Late yesterday afternoon, Judge James Boasberg of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia struck down the National Labor Relations Board’s recently passed "quickie" election rule. The Board’s rule, published in December 2011 and purportedly effective as of April 30, 2012, amended election case procedures to significantly reduce the time between the filing of a union election petition and the holding of a representation election.


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As we reported earlier, the path appears (at least temporarily) clear for the NLRB’s new “quickie election” rules to take effect.  In anticipation of the effective date, Board General Counsel Lafe Solomon last week issued a memorandum to all regional directors advising them on how to process union election petitions under the new rules.  While it is too early to tell how dramatically the General Counsel’s guidance will alter the labor relations landscape, it is clear from his memorandum that the Board intends to accelerate the current union election timeline as much as possible.


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In prior postings, we have reported about the potential effects that the National Labor Relations Board’s (“NLRB”) recent pro-labor composition could have on non-union employers and how it will become increasingly easier for unions to organize employees as a result of the NLRB’s recent decisions and procedural changes.  This posting focuses on the convergence of two potential developments – the likely change in the definition of “supervisor” under the National Labor Relations Act (the “Act”) and the NLRB’s recent proposal to expedite the procedures for union elections – and how these two developments combined could hamper an employer’s ability to effectively oppose a union-organizing campaign.


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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.

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This afternoon, the National Labor Relations Board ("NLRB") passed a resolution to amend several of its regulations that govern pre-election litigation procedures that will invariably pave the way for quicker elections in representation cases.  The resolution, which was proposed by Board Chairman Mark Pearce, authorizes the Board to issue a final rule that would make a number of procedural changes to its pre-election procedure, including the following:


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