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The US Department of Labor (DOL) recently finalized regulations affecting employers and trade associations across the US.  Those regulations would require reporting of engagement with legal counsel involved in direct or indirect persuasion of employees on matters of union representation.  The stated goal of the regulations was to bring into public view the point that attorneys and consultants are often engaged to help employers in communicating with employees.  With this goal in mind, the regulations sought to force employers and their counsel, effective July 1, 2016, to report engagements, terms of engagement, certain tasks, and expenditures linked to employer communication with employees.  Thus, if an employer hired counsel to draft or review communication plans, to prepare communication pieces, to train supervisors on things they can and cannot say under the law, or in taking action against an employee who engaged in misconduct during the time of a union organizing campaign, such information would be required for disclosure on forms developed by the DOL.  Not only must the attorney/consultant file the report, but the employer must as well, even if the attorney/consultant had no communication directly with employees other than supervisors and management.

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