After President Biden won the November 2020 general election, nobody really expected the National Labor Relations Board’s (“NLRB’s”) employer-friendly doctrines to survive the new Administration. And they won’t.

Foreshadowing the next four years, on August 12, 2021 the NLRB’s new General Counsel Jennifer Abruzzo released her own doctrinal “wish list” in Memorandum GC 21-04.  The list detailed an exhaustive list of cases and issues that Abruzzo mandate go through her office “to determine whether current law ensures that employees have the right to exercise their fundamental Section 7 rights both fully and freely.”

Translation: Abruzzo wants the NLRB to reverse each and every one of the Trump Board’s pro-employer rulings that it can.

In fact, Abruzzo identified 11 distinct categories of cases that she says saw a “doctrinal shift” under the prior administration, including cases concerning (among other issues):

  • Employer handbook rules;
  • Confidentiality rules;
  • What constitutes “protected concerted activity;”
  • Union access rights;
  • Status of an individual as an “employee;” and
  • Employers’ duty to recognize and bargain with a union, and their right to withdraw recognition.

Abruzzo went on to identify dozens of other categories of cases and doctrines that she has mandated Regions to bring to her attention for review.

Anticipating these changes, we’ve discussed many of these issues, and what we expect from a union- and employee-friendly Biden Board, in the first three installments of our new Labor Law Insider Podcast.

Contact your Husch Blackwell labor lawyer with any questions about this rapidly-evolving area of law, and how it will impact your business.

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Photo of Tom Godar Tom Godar

Tom advises employers on issues such as wage and hour claims, discrimination claims, confidentiality and noncompete agreements, independent contractor relationships, recruiting and retention, policy development, training and discipline. He represents clients before the National Labor Relations Board, the Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission, and

Tom advises employers on issues such as wage and hour claims, discrimination claims, confidentiality and noncompete agreements, independent contractor relationships, recruiting and retention, policy development, training and discipline. He represents clients before the National Labor Relations Board, the Wisconsin Employment Relations Commission, and other state and federal administrative agencies.

Photo of Adam Doerr Adam Doerr

With a strong background in management defense and traditional labor law, Adam advises clients on union avoidance, union relations, union contract administration, unfair labor practice allegations, collective bargaining negotiations, contract administration and grievance investigations. In addition to providing day-to-day counsel, he regularly represents…

With a strong background in management defense and traditional labor law, Adam advises clients on union avoidance, union relations, union contract administration, unfair labor practice allegations, collective bargaining negotiations, contract administration and grievance investigations. In addition to providing day-to-day counsel, he regularly represents employers in National Labor Relations Board proceedings and arbitrations, as well as in litigation in both state and federal courts.