NLRB Acting General Counsel issues guidance to regions in preparation of new “Ambush Election” rule implementation

April 26, 2012

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In a memo issued today, NLRB Acting General Counsel Lafe Solomon outlined in detail how regional offices will implement new representation case procedures that take effect on Monday, April 30. The guidance covers the entire representation case process from beginning to end, incorporating to the extent necessary the new rules and the procedures that remain unchanged.

The General Counsel’s office also issued a set of Frequently Asked Questions explaining the Board’s revised rules and the procedures that will be followed by regions in implementing those rules in an effort to provide guidance in this area to the regional staffs, practitioners and all members of the general public.

“It is my sincere hope that the new Board rules and this guideline memorandum will save time and resources for both Agency staff and the parties who appear before the Board,” Mr. Solomon said in his memo. “While these guidelines present challenges with regard to their implementation, they also provide opportunities for us to fully effectuate the policies and purposes of the Act, as they relate to the representation process.”

 The Board voted in December to adopt several previously proposed rule amendments designed to reduce unnecessary litigation in  the NLRB election process. The changes primarily affect pre- and post-election legal procedures in the relatively few elections – currently about 10% – in which parties can’t agree on issues such as the appropriateness of the voting unit.  

The new procedures consolidate some legal appeals available during the proceeding and limit the introduction of evidence at hearings to issues that directly address the question of whether an election should be held.

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