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Court Suspends NLRB-Required Notice of Collective Bargaining Rights

Employers contend NLRB should not be an advocate for unions.

Date: April 2011

In September 2011, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) instituted a rule that required employers – even non-union employers – to post a detailed notification regarding employees’ collective bargaining rights. The posting was to become mandatory in December 2011.

Due to legal challenges by employer groups, the NLRB postponed the effective date of the required posting until April 30, 2012.

In court, employer groups argued that the NLRB:

  • does not have the authority to require such postings, and
  • may not mandate a finding of an unfair labor practice against an employer for failing to post, because the NLRB is supposed to be a quasi-judicial arbiter of employee rights, not an advocate for unions and unionization.

The NLRB contends that the collective bargaining posting is simply a non-biased notification to employees of their rights under federal law.

Because of conflicting court rulings as to whether the NLRB exceeded its authority, on April 17, 2012, the District of Columbia Court of Appeals granted an injunction that stopped the NLRB from enforcing the required posting until the underlying legal challenge is decided.

Bottom Line: As a result of the injunction, employers are not required to display the NLRB notice regarding collective bargaining rights until the issues described above are completely resolved through the judicial process.

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