By Ruder Ware Alumni
April 28, 2015
On March 19, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a resolution to block the National Labor Relations Board from implementing the “quickie election” (or “ambush election”) rule. This legislation was previously approved by the U.S. Senate and now goes to the President for consideration. It is likely the President will veto this legislation which means the “quickie election” rules would still be in effect and are intended to be implemented on April 14. There is pending litigation that may stop the implementation of these new rules that address the processing of a union representation election but any court action is still up in the air.
As we have noted, the “quickie election” rules are scheduled to go into effect on April 14. They contain a number of changes to the current union representation election proceedings including eliminating a twenty-five day delay that can occur throughout the process and limiting the amount of arguments an employer can make to exclude employees from eligibility to vote in the union election.
The practical effect of these election rule changes is to significantly expedite the election process and thereby prevent an employer from having the time to effectively advocate for non-union status at the company facilities. Employers must be very sensitive to whether there are union election activities occurring in the workplace because there will be a very limited time to advocate against union representation if an election petition is filed and these rules are still in force. The company will be required to respond almost immediately with a list of eligible employees and will not be able to argue for exclusion of certain employees from the election process until after the election has been held.
Many employers are preparing a union election campaign strategy and putting that in place in order to be ready if a union election petition is filed. Hopefully, the courts in Washington D.C. and Texas will issue a temporary injunction to block the implementation of these new rules; however, there is no guarantee that will happen.
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