Second Appellate Court Rejects NLRB Poster

A second federal appellate court has rejected the National Labor Relations Board’s mandate that private sector employers post a Notice spelling out some, but not all, of employees' workplace rights. The ruling in Chamber of Commerce v. NLRB comes from a lawsuit brought in South Carolina to challenge the poster regulation.

Earlier, the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals had rejected the NLRB's poster mandate, principally on the ground that the required statement of selected rights compromised employers' free speech rights. As phrased, the poster promoted union activity and workplace unrest while essentially ignoring employees' rights to work union-free or to decertify an incumbent union. An earlier post addressed this ruling. See

The Fourth Circuit approached the poster requirement from another perspective. That is, the NLRB lacked statutory authority to impose a workplace poster requirement. Finding no basis in the National Labor Relations Act to promote awareness of workplace labor rights, the court distinguished rights NLRB protects from rights set forth in other federal laws which specifically spell out notice requirements.

It is expected that NLRB will continue to push for the Notice of Rights to be approved by taking DC Circuit and Fourth Circuit cases to the United States Supreme Court. The NLRB's authority in other matters is currently a pending issue before the Supreme Court in the Noel Canning litigation. Stay tuned for further developments.

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