The Seventeenth Edition makes a number of significant changes to its predecessor, reflecting the evolution of the law relating to employers, employees, and unions in a dynamic economy and polarized political environment. This edition includes new decisions of the National Labor Relations Board appointed by President Trump, which has departed in many, significant ways from the approach of the Board under the Obama Administration. The Trump Board’s starkly different outlook on the role of labor law in the contemporary workplace is reflected in its overturning or reversing precedents on many key issues, such as protections for employee electronic communications, accountability for employers in “fissured” enterprises, and treatment of various other employer restrictions on collective employee activity. The book also contains judicial decisions addressing these developments, evincing the growing conflicts over the role of labor unions in society.

This edition supplies a comprehensive revision in light of major legal shifts occurring from 2016 through 2020, notably

  • Newly revised NLRB representation election rules
  • SuperShuttle and more, addressing the distinction between employees and independent contractors
  • The Boeing Company, adopting a new and markedly different framework for analyzing whether facial neutral workplace rules interfere with Section 7 rights, including rules addressing matters such as employee use of cameras in the workplace and workplace civility standards
  • Caesars Entertainment, reverting to the Board’s prior approach (under The Register Guard) to rules on employee use of employer email for concerted activity
  • The NLRB General Counsel’s advocacy of stricter limitations on neutrality agreements
  • Newly enacted rules overturning Browning-Ferris and narrowing the scope of joint employer status
  • Alstate Maintenance, seemingly narrowing the scope of concerted activity for mutual aid or protection
  • Epic Systems, in which the Supreme Court rejected the Board’s decision in Murphy Oil, thereby unwinding protection against contractual waivers of the capacity to participate in group arbitration or adjudication of employment-related claims
  • General Motors, adopting a new approach to determining when allegedly abusive conduct loses protection under Section 7.
  • MV Transportation, abandoning the “clear and unmistakable” standard for determining whether a CBA waives the duty to bargain and replacing it with a “contract coverage” standard.

New discussion problems and exercises throughout the text offer students the opportunity to engage with this new material, illustrating how exciting and challenging the study of labor law is today.

Imprint: Foundation Press
Series: University Casebook Series
Publication Date: 02/22/2021

Matthew W. Finkin, University of Illinois College of Law

Timothy P. Glynn, Seton Hall University School of Law


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