California Employment Law Update

Category Archives: NLRA

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Supervisor’s Wrongful Termination Claim Was Not Preempted By The NLRA

Dang v. Maruichi Am. Corp., 207 Cal. Rptr. 3d 658 (Cal. Ct. App. 2016) Khanh Dang sued his former employer for wrongful termination in violation of public policy, claiming that Maruichi had discharged him for engaging in concerted activity relating to unionizing efforts. The trial court granted Maruichi’s motion for summary judgment on the ground … Continue Reading

Ninth Circuit Strikes Down Employer’s Class Action Waiver

Morris v. Ernst & Young, LLP, 2016 WL 4433080 (9th Cir. 2016) As a condition of employment, Stephen Morris and Kelly McDaniel were required to sign agreements not to join with other employees in bringing legal claims via arbitration against their employer. Morris and McDaniel filed a class and collective action against the company, alleging … Continue Reading

Employers Should Now Run—Not Walk—Toward Adopting Arbitration Agreements in California

Yesterday, the California Supreme Court issued its long-awaited decision in Iskanian v. CLS Transp. Los Angeles, LLC, upholding class action waivers in employment arbitration agreements. This means that the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2011 opinion in AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion is to be given full force and effect in the employment setting in California. That … Continue Reading

NLRB Takes D.R. Horton One Step Further While the Ninth Circuit Upholds Its Contrary Decision

On January 17, 2014, the National Labor Relations Board Judge Lisa D. Thompson concluded that an agreement that did not prohibit class or collective action still violated Section 8(a)(1) of the National Labor Relations Act because the Agreement “interfere[d], restrain[ed], or coerce[d]” plaintiff and other similarly situated employees’ “substantive rights to file classwide litigation.”  This … Continue Reading

D.R. Horton and the Arbitration Hotchpotch: Emerging “Rules” and the Future of Compelled Arbitration in California

Horton Hears an Employer Victory Last December, the Fifth Circuit issued its long-awaited decision in D.R. Horton, Inc. v. NLRB, holding that employers may require employees to sign arbitration agreements categorically waiving the right to pursue employment claims in a collective or class action. In doing so, the Fifth Circuit’s rejected the NLRB’s opinion that … Continue Reading

D.C. Circuit Reviews NLRB’s Controversial Register Guard E-Mail Solicitation Decision

As we reported previously, in December 2007 the National Labor Relations Board issued a decision relating to company e-mail policies in The Guard Publishing Company, d/b/a The Register-Guard, 351 NLRB No. 70 (2007), holding that an employer (i) may restrict the use of its computer systems to business related uses only, and (ii) could distinguish … Continue Reading

Supreme Court Endorses Union-Negotiated Arbitration of Discrimination Claims

Proskauer Prevails As The Court Holds That Collectively Bargained Agreements for The Arbitration of Statutory Discrimination Claims are Enforceable On April 1, 2009, the United States Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision, ruled in favor of Proskauer Rose’s client 14 Penn Plaza LLC, holding that a collective bargaining agreement (“CBA”) that clearly and unmistakably requires … Continue Reading

California Law Limiting Use Of State Funds To Deter Union Organizing Is Unconstitutional

Chamber of Commerce v. Brown, 554 U.S. 60, 128 S. Ct. 2408 (2008) Assembly Bill 1889, enacted in 2000, prohibited private employers that receive state funds – whether by reimbursement, grant, contract, use of state property or pursuant to a state program – from using such funds to “assist, promote, or deter union organizing.” Violators … Continue Reading

Non-Union Employees No Longer Entitled To Have Representative Present During Investigatory Interviews

IBM Corp., 341 NLRB No. 148 (June 9, 2004) In this far-reaching decision, the National Labor Relations Board overruled its own recent decision in Epilepsy Found. of N.E. Ohio, 331 NLRB 676 (2000), and held that employees who are not represented by a union are not entitled to have a coworker present during investigatory interviews. … Continue Reading

California Statute Barring Recipients Of State Funds From Pro Or Anti-Union Advocacy Is Unconstitutional

Chamber of Commerce of the U.S. v. Lockyer, 364 F.3d 1154 (9th Cir. 2004) In 2000, California enacted Assembly Bill No. 1889 (Government Code §§ 16645-16649) which, among other things, prohibits private employers “receiving state funds in excess of $10,000 in any calendar year” from using such funds to “assist, promote, or deter union organizing.” … Continue Reading

Company May Not Terminate Employee For Discussing Fairness Of Bonus System

Grant-Burton v. Covenant Care, Inc., 99 Cal. App. 4th 1361 (2002) Sharron Grant-Burton alleged that her employment was terminated in retaliation for having participated in a group discussion with other marketing directors about the company’s bonus structure. The company’s director of human relations testified at her deposition that Grant-Burton’s discussion of bonuses in a public … Continue Reading

Undocumented Alien Is Not Entitled To Backpay Award Under NLRA

Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc. v. NLRB, 535 U.S. 137 (2002) The employer in this case, Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc., was found to have violated Section 8(a)(3) of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) when it selected four known union supporters for layoff. During a compliance hearing before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ), one of the … Continue Reading
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