May an employer hire a replacement for a union employee on strike?

Author: Jed L. Marcus, Bressler, Amery & Ross, P.C.

Yes. An employer may hire a replacement for a striking employee. The nature of the replacement depends on the type of strike. In the event of an economic strike, that is, a strike triggered because the employees are unhappy with the employer's contract offer, an employer may hire permanent replacements. Permanent replacements need not be let go at the end of the strike. A striker may be recalled only when an opening becomes available. Where the strike is an unfair labor strike, that is, a strike triggered by an employer's unfair labor practices, the employer may hire only temporary replacements. When the strike is over, the replacements must be released and the strikers returned to their jobs.