Colleges

News & Analysis as of

Back to School: NLRB Takes Aim at Colleges and Universities

Seyfarth Synopsis: The National Labor Relations Board issued three important decisions this week that will significantly impact private colleges and universities....more

NLRB Rules that Student Assistants Can Unionize; Debate May Now Shift to Whether They Should

In a sweeping decision issued on August 23, 2016, the National Labor Relations Board reversed its 2004 holding in Brown University that graduate students are not employees under the National Labor Relations Act. The Board...more

NLRB Holds Student Assistants Who Have a Common-Law Employment Relationship With a Private University Are "Employees" Under The...

In an August 23, 2016, decision, Trustees of Columbia University, 364 NLRB No. 90 (2016), the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) overruled existing precedent and held that student assistants, who have a common-law...more

NLRB Decides Private University Teaching and Research Assistants Can Unionize

Continuing a recent trend of upending long-standing decisions, the National Labor Relations Board ruled yesterday that student teaching and research assistants at private colleges and universities are statutory employees who...more

NLRB: Student Assistants Now Employees Entitled to Unionize

The National Labor Relations Board has ruled in a 3-1 decision that graduate students at private, nonprofit higher education institutions "who perform services at a university in connection with their studies are statutory...more

NLRB Reverses Over a Decade of Precedent: Student Employees Entitled to NLRA Protection

Reversing more than a decade of precedent, the activist National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) ruled on August 23, 2016 in The Trustees of Columbia University in the City of New York and Graduate Workers of Columbia–GWC, UAW...more

NLRB Rules that Graduate (and Undergraduate!) Students are Employees and May Unionize

The National Labor Relations Board (Board), in Columbia University , has issued a 3-1 decision holding that graduate, and undergraduate, student assistants are common law employees within the meaning of the National Labor...more

NLRB: Student Teaching Assistants Can Be Employees Under the NLRA

In a 2-to-1 decision, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or “the Board”) overturned longstanding precedent to hold that student teaching assistants can be classified as employees under the National Labor Relations Act...more

NLRB Gives Students Right to Unionize

Undergraduate and graduate teaching assistants now have the right to organize and engage in collective bargaining, following the National Labor Relations Board’s (NLRB) Columbia University ruling on August 23, 2016. For most...more

NLRB Paves Way For Student Unionization

Seyfarth Synopsis: The NLRB ruled that students who work as teaching assistants at colleges and universities are “employees” under the NLRA and are thus permitted to engage in collective bargaining. On August 23, 2016,...more

NLRB Classifies TAs as Employees

The NLRB chose not to interfere with collegiate football. Northwestern University, Case 13-RC-121359 (August 17, 2015). Collegiate teaching assistants, though, are another thing. In Columbia University, Case 02-RC-143012...more

NLRB Rules Student Employees Can Unionize

In a game-changing decision reversing clear legal precedent, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) ruled by a 3-1 margin today that university students who work as teaching and research assistants at private universities...more

[Webinar] Proposed Elimination of Arbitration Clauses (Proposed Borrower Defense Rule Series) - September 7th, 12:00pm CST

The third webinar in our series will examine the proposed elimination of arbitration clauses in agreements between students and institutions. We will discuss the particulars of the proposal, to include the potential impact...more

NLRB Rules That Graduate Students Are Employees

Yesterday, the National Labor Relations Board (“the Board”) issued its long awaited decision in Columbia University. Not surprisingly, the Board, in a 3-1 decision, overturned 12 years of precedent by ruling that “student...more

The NLRB Opens the Door to Union Organizing Among Teaching Assistants and Other Student Assistants at Private Colleges and...

In what will come as no surprise to even the most casual labor law observer, yesterday the National Labor Relations Board jettisoned established precedent and granted teaching assistants and other student assistants at...more

IRS Issues New Management Agreement Safe Harbor Provisions, Providing Enhanced Flexibility for College and University Food...

New management agreement guidelines were issued by the IRS today in a new Revenue Procedure (Rev. Proc.) 2016-44. Rev_Proc_2016-44 provides revised safe harbors under which a private management contract does not result in...more

Multiple Universities Sued Over 403(b) Retirement Plan Investment Fees

In the last several days, a number of large private universities have been sued regarding the investment fees in their 403(b) retirement plans. The lawsuits claim that these universities breached their fiduciary duties under...more

Public Bodies Not Required to Create New Records to Respond to FOIA Request

The Second District Appellate Court recently addressed the question of when an electronic record is a public record subject to FOIA and when a public agency is required to release information from an electronic database. In...more

[Webinar] Proposed Changes to the Financial Responsibility Standards - August 31st, 12:00pm CST

Among the significant changes proposed by the Department are revisions to the financial responsibility standards. The proposed regulation would create a significant number of new “triggering events” that would automatically...more

Colleges and Universities Targeted in Class Action Lawsuits over Operation of Retirement Plans

Multiple class action lawsuits seeking millions of dollars in damages were filed last week against eight nonprofit universities challenging the administration of their 403(b) retirement plans. The lawsuits, which were all...more

Higher ed braces for flood of lawsuits over retirement plans

Numerous colleges and universities sponsor retirement plans—both defined benefit (DB) and defined contribution (DC)—to provide retirement income security for their employees. But recently a number of higher education...more

U.S. employers targeted by lawsuits claiming excessive fees in employee retirement and savings plans: Could it happen in Canada?

I recently wrote about the legal risks regarding plan fees that should be considered by Canadian employers who sponsor group registered retirement savings plans and defined contribution pension plans....more

ERISA Class Actions Filed Against Higher Education Institutions

Several ERISA breach of fiduciary duty class actions involving allegedly excessive retirement plan fees were filed this week against higher education institutions including colleges, universities, and medical schools. The...more

[Webinar] The Proposed Borrower Defense Framework (Proposed Borrower Defense Rule Series) - August 24th, 12:00pm CST

In this first webinar, we will deconstruct the proposed borrower defense framework, with particular attention to what would constitute a valid “claim,” and the individual and group processes proposed for resolving such...more

The New Clery Handbook: What Your College or University Needs to Know Before Publishing Your October 2016 Annual Security Report...

On June 23, the U.S. Department of Education, Office of Postsecondary Education, published the 2016 Edition of The Handbook for Campus Safety and Security Reporting, as required by the Clery Act (the “Handbook")...more

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