Internal Investigations National Labor Relations Board

News & Analysis as of

Executive Labor Summary - July / August 2015

Quickie elections seem here to stay, but Senate Republicans aren’t giving up. On July 29, the National Labor Relations Board won another challenge to its “quickie election” rules pursued by employer groups. This time, Judge...more

Can I Get A Witness (Or At Least A Witness Statement)? NLRB Rules Witness Statements Are Now Fair Game

For over 35 years, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) held that witness statements obtained by unionized employers during pre-arbitration investigations were exempt from disclosure to the union. However, on June 26,...more

NLRB Says Employers Cannot Ask Employees Not to Discuss Internal Investigation

When conducting an internal investigation involving possible disciplinary violations, employers often ask participants in the investigation to maintain its confidentiality pending completion. Last month, the National Labor...more

Disciplinary Investigations of Employees – Three Names to Know

Whenever an employer is considering disciplining an employee for misconduct, three names from 1967, 1975 and 1985 continue to be associated with employer investigations and interrogations, in much the same way that Mr....more

NLRB Gives Employers a Hangover: Longstanding Anheuser-Busch decision overruled

More than 35 years after its decision in Anheuser-Busch, Inc., 237 NLRB 982 (1978), the NLRB has reversed course and held that employers may no longer summarily reject union requests for witness statements obtained in...more

Board Overrules Longstanding Protections Against Disclosure of Witness Statements

Since 1978, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has treated witness statements as exempt from an employer’s general duty to furnish information to unions under Section 8(a)(5) of the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA)....more

NLRB Limits Confidentiality in Workplace Investigations

In two decisions issued on June 26, the National Labor Relations Board overruled its longstanding precedent holding that employers may withhold witness statements from requesting unions and further held that general policies...more

Union Represented Employee Not Entitled To Co-Worker Witness During Investigatory Interview, NLRB Rules

The last few months at the NLRB have been relatively quiet, save of course for the ambush election rules which went into effect on April 15; the true impact of these rules has yet to be revealed. Many of the recent Board...more

The Recent SEC Attack on Confidentiality Agreements: What Employers Need To Know and Do Now

Introduction - • Employers typically impose confidentiality restrictions to protect trade secrets and confidential information, including when conducting internal investigations and in employee separation...more

Can You Keep a Secret? The SEC Says to Ask Carefully

Employers have a lot to be worried about. Employees are given access to trade secrets, customer lists, financial accounts, and other highly sensitive, confidential information. Most employers attempt to deter improper use of...more

The SEC Joins the NLRB and EEOC in the Assault on Employee Confidentiality Agreements and Policies in Workplace Investigations

On April 1, 2015, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced its first settlement of a whistleblower enforcement action against a company for using confidentiality agreements to stifle the...more

Employer’s confidentiality agreement triggers SEC action and penalty - review and revise agreements now

Consistent with its prior announcements that it will protect and encourage whistleblowers, the SEC recently announced its “first enforcement action” against a company for using allegedly restrictive language in an agreement...more

SEC Cracks Down on Agreement Requiring In-House Reporting of Fraud Complaint

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced today that it had made good on its prior promises to take a hard look at employment agreements and policies that could be viewed as attempting to keep securities fraud...more

"Balancing Protection of Information With Employee Rights in Confidentiality Policies"

The developing law on employer confidentiality policies underscores the tension between an employer's ever-increasing need to protect confidential information and an employee's established right to discuss terms and...more

Right to Union Representation Applies to Employer Referrals for Drug and Alcohol Tests, NLRB Rules

The National Labor Relations Board ("Board"), in its July 31, 2014 decision in Ralph's Grocery Co., 361 NLRB No. 9 (2014), ruled that so-called "Weingarten rights" – the general right of a unionized employee to request union...more

National Labor Relations Board Majority Holds That Seeking Co-Worker Assistance with an Individual Harassment Complaint is...

Last week, the NLRB took an exceptionally broad view of what constitutes “concerted activity” and what kind of efforts are aimed at “mutual aid or protection” under the National Labor Relations Act. For employers, this could...more

Supreme Court Opinion Calls into Question Hundreds of NLRB Rulings

On Thursday, June 26, 2014, the Supreme Court issued its long-awaited Noel Canning decision (NLRB v. Noel Canning, 572 U.S. ____ (2014)), and invalidated President Obama’s January 2012 appointments of three individuals to the...more

NLRB Continues to Throw Up Roadblocks for Internal Investigations

As we previously reported, the National Labor Relations Board has thrown down some pretty significant roadblocks for employers attempting to conduct thorough and actionable internal investigations. The Board continued those...more

NLRB Takes Aim at Non-Union Employers

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) recently handed down a series of decisions that challenged the fundamental tenet of the employee-employer relationship: at-will employment. This new affront came on the heels of a...more

Further Guidance: NLRB General Counsel's Office Weighs In On Confidentiality During Workplace Investigations

Recently, the National Labor Relations Board's (NLRB) General Counsel Division of Advice ("Division of Advice") released a memorandum offering guidance to an NLRB Regional Director concerning employers requiring...more

Employment Law Advisory for May 1, 2013: NLRB Division of Advice Issues Guidance on When Employer May Demand Confidentiality in an...

Internal investigations of possible employee misconduct or other employment-related issues are not uncommon. Most employers who conduct such internal investigations routinely request that the complainant, the target of the...more

The National Labor Relations Board 2012 Year in Review

Introduction - Wow, 2012 was quite the year for the National Labor Relations Board (“Board”)! Last year, we discussed the Board’s agenda, which at the time we described as aggressive, but with the benefit of...more

Employment And Labor Law Alert: The National Labor Relations Board Changes Course - Witness Statements Obtained During Workplace...

Until recently, the National Labor Relations Board's decision in Anheuser-Busch, 237 NLRB 982 (1978), was clear: employers were not obligated to provide witness statements collected during workplace investigations to the...more

NLRB Overrules Anheuser-Busch: Witness Statements Now Subject to Disclosure

Last year, we notified you here that the National Labor Relations Board will now consider a general employer rule requiring confidentiality during an internal investigation into an employee complaint to be an unfair labor...more

As 2012 Ends, So Does the NLRB's Longstanding Bright-Line Rule Protecting Witness Statements from Disclosure

As the calendar year ends, so does National Labor Relations Board Member Brian Hayes' term, prompting a series of decisions, including Piedmont Gardens, 359 NLRB No. 46 (Dec. 15, 2012). There the Board reversed 34 year-old...more

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