Overview: The labor management process may include collective bargaining. Collective bargaining is a good-faith effort by an employer and a union to engage in a give and take process to achieve a freely negotiated written contract - also known as a collective bargaining agreement (CBA).
A good faith effort typically includes:
CBAs can provide employees with greater rights then those minimally required by state or federal law. Unions frequently fight to secure rights that are not typically covered under state or federal law - such as seniority criteria, grievance/arbitration procedures, minimum leave of benefits and retirement type of benefits.
During the process of securing a CBA, employers must be careful not to engage in any unfair labor practices, such as refusing to sign the CBA or bargaining exclusively by mail or through the exchange of written proposals only. Generally, once a CBA is signed, an employer cannot make unilateral changes to its terms and conditions. If one party ignores its obligations under the CBA, the other party can request or compel arbitration of the dispute.
Trends: Some CBAs have provisions that address paid leave, provide for leave beyond the 12 weeks of FMLA, address the availability of light duty assignments, or discuss the accrual and use of, or bidding for, paid time off.
Employers with partially or fully unionized workforces should make sure that employees leaves under the FMLA, ADA, state law or employer policy comply with the provisions of any applicable CBA and that the most favorable protections are applied.
Author: Melissa Boyce, JD, Legal Editor
President Trump has nominated 10th Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Neal Gorsuch to fill the Supreme Court seat left vacant since the February 2016 death of Justice Antonin Scalia. In many ways, Judge Gorsuch's record mirrors that of Justice Scalia.
The nation's public employee unions have "won" a 4-4 tie at the Supreme Court in a case that could have left their future in doubt. The result means that unions may continue to collect dues from employees they represent, so long as the dues are being used for collective bargaining, contract administration or grievance adjustment purposes.
Several Employment Law Manual sections have been updated to reflect New York City's new Grocery Worker Retention Act, set to go into effect on May 8, 2016.
This unique look inside the Supreme Court features the key points and questions on the justices' minds in the case of Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association.
This How To details the steps a prudent employer should take to handle union issues arising from a consolidation of two or more work facilities.
This How To details the steps a prudent employer should take to prepare for collective negotiations with a union.
In TruServ Corp. v. NLRB, 254 F.3d 1105, (D.C. Cir. 2001), the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit addressed whether 1) a genuine bargaining impasse had been reached prior to the employer's implementing terms and conditions of employment, and 2) whether the employer violated the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) by disciplining unit employees pursuant to unilaterally implemented work rules and refusing to process employee grievances.
In NLRB v. Katz, 369 U.S. 736 (1962), the Supreme Court addressed whether an employer had violated the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) duty to bargain collectively by instituting changes regarding matters that were the subjects of mandatory bargaining without first consulting the union.
An employer may use this Solicitation and Distribution Policy to manage the solicitation and distribution of information among employees and outsiders, usually in a non-union environment, and to establish guidelines for compliance with the National Labor Relations Act in a completely non-discriminatory manner.
HR guidance on collective bargaining agreements.