NLRB Abandons Attempts to Enforce Notice-Posting Rule

On January 6, 2014, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) issued a press release stating that it will not seek U.S. Supreme Court review of two separate U.S. Court of Appeals decisions striking down its notice-posting rule. The rule would have required most private sector employers to post a notice of employee rights under the National Labor Relations Act, such as the right to organize or support a union.

On June 14, 2013, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit struck down the notice-posting rule because the NLRB exceeded its statutory authority to impose such a rule. Chamber of Commerce of U.S. v. NLRB (4th Cir. 2013). Prior to that, the National Association of Manufacturers persuaded the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia to invalidate the notice-posting rule. In making its decision, the D.C. Circuit noted that the rule would have affected nearly 6,000,000 employers, the “great majority” of which are small businesses.  National Ass’n of Mfrs. v. N.L.R.B. (D.C. Cir. 2013).

In its press release, the NLRB said it “remains committed to ensuring that workers, businesses, and labor organizations are informed of their rights and obligations under the National Labor Relations Act. Therefore, the NLRB will continue its national outreach program to educate the American public about the statute.” Consequently, the NLRB will continue to make the invalidated workplace poster available on its website for employers who voluntarily wish to post it. For now, however, private-sector employers no longer have to worry about the potential requirement to post information on unionization.