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The Developing Labor Law: The Board, the Courts, and the National Labor Relations Act, Sixth Edition

Developing Labor Law 6th Ed large

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Main Volume Information

The ultimate desktop reference for labor and employment law practitioners

“The Developing Labor Law is the most comprehensive resource in the field—I have been using it ever since it first came out. The Sixth Edition offers the latest analysis, and I would recommend it to anyone working in our field.”

—Gordon E. Krischer, Of Counsel, O’Melveny & Myers LLP, Los Angeles, CA 

A Supplement to this volume is now available. Order Now.

For more than 40 years, practitioners have relied on The Developing Labor Law: The Board, the Courts, and the National Labor Relations Act to keep them current on U.S. labor law. This two-volume treatise, written by distinguished members of the ABA Section of Labor and Employment Law representing management, labor, and neutrals, is the essential research tool for labor and employment law practitioners. It provides an authoritative, balanced perspective on the legal rights and duties of employees, employers, and unions and on procedures and remedies under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). 

For the specialist, this classic reference is a quick means of accessing leading cases; for the generalist, it provides an excellent summary of the law and its development. All labor and employment law practitioners will benefit from the history of the development of every major labor law doctrine that this distinctive reference work provides-from contract bar to deferral to arbitration and all that lies in between, including prohibited secondary activity. The Sixth Edition includes updated discussion of a number of important topics, including: 

  • Employer-mandated confidentiality agreements
  • Employee handbook restrictions on solicitations
  • Definition of a supervisor
  • Definition of an independent contractor
  • The disagreement between the Board and the Ninth Circuit concerning the right of an employer to unilaterally discontinue union dues checkoff after a contract expires
  • Obligation of an employer to provide financial information requested by the union during bargaining
  • Legitimacy of union use of inflated rat balloons and banners to advertise labor disputes
  • Rights of employees to object to payment of full union dues under a union shop agreement
  • Obligation of an employee who is unlawfully discharged under the NLRA to seek interim employment
  • Definition of a “salt” 

Several important decisions altering Board precedents have been handed down since the Fifth Edition that will affect labor law practitioners. New cases discussed in the Sixth Edition concern such topics as: 

  • Employer restrictions on the use of company email to discuss union activity
  • New standards for determining the unit in which an election should be held when unions are seeking smaller units than employers
  • Whether voluntary recognition bars the filing of an election petition
  • Whether union bannering amounts to picketing in violation of the secondary boycott and recognitional picketing provisions of the NLRA
  • The requirement by unions that employees notify them annually of their objections to paying union dues in excess of the cost of representing the unit
  • The standards for determining whether an employer's refusal to hire a  “salt” is unlawful
  • Qualification of an “at will” employee as a permanent strike replacement
  • Assessment of supervisory status
  • Board jurisdiction over operators of charter schools 

Supplement Information


The new 2013 Supplement discusses significant decisions reversing longstanding NLRB precedent, including: 

  • WKYC-TV, in which the NLRB reversed 50 years of precedent and announced that employers may not unilaterally discontinue dues-checkoff provisions after the expiration of collective bargaining agreements
  • American Baptist Homes of the West dba Piedmont Gardens, in which the NLRB reversed 35 years of precedent, dramatically changing the rule applicable to employers in responding to union information requests seeking employee witness statements collected during a workplace investigation

The 2013 Supplement also reviews recent NLRB social media cases, including Hispanics United of Buffalo, Inc., in which the NLRB found that an employer violated the Act by firing five employees for comments they posted on Facebook, and the myriad of cases in which the NLRB found employer rules and policies violate Section 7 of the Act and infringe upon employees' rights. 

Main Volume Information

2012/2 Volumes/3,582 pp. Hardcover/ISBN 9781570187780/ABAWEB1778

Supplement Information  

2013/Approx. 400 pp. Softcover/ISBN 9781617462801/ABAWEB2280

About the Editor-in-Chief
John E. Higgins, Jr. is an adjunct faculty member at the Columbus School of Law, The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C., and is retired from the NLRB.

Committee on Development of the Law Under the National Labor Relations Act, ABA Section of Labor and Employment Law 

Supplement Information

Tanja L. Thompson, Gwynne A. Wilcox and Barry J. Kearney, Editors-in-Chief 
Committee on Development of the Law Under the National Labor Relations Act, ABA Section of Labor and Employment Law