Labor Relations for Management

  • Holland & Knight's labor law attorneys exclusively represent management in all union-management matters.
  • Our team defends clients against unfair labor practice charges and guides unionized employers in bargaining with their unions and in administering their collective bargaining agreements.
  • We provide legal advice to ensure that our clients' policies comply with state and federal law, including the National Labor Relations Act, in order to avoid inadvertent but costly unfair labor practice proceedings.

Non-unionized employers often do not take enough time to consider the potential impact of unions and related labor laws on their business. At the same time, many companies where a union already has been organized need to think more proactively and constructively about the existing union-management relationship. In both cases, advice from experienced and insightful labor law counsel is essential and can help head off costly problems.

Counsel That Focuses on Management

When you look for labor law counsel to guide your company on union-related matters, it is helpful to work with a firm that focuses exclusively on management’s concerns. At Holland & Knight, our Labor, Employment and Benefits Group strictly represents management in all union-management matters that fall within the jurisdiction of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the National Mediation Board, under, respectively, the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) and the Railway Labor Act (RLA), and before local and state agencies with jurisdiction over public sector employees and employers.

Being Proactive

Getting legal advice covering all facets of the union-management relationship, including before a union has appeared on the scene, is one important way you can be proactive. Our seasoned labor law attorneys are committed to helping you make certain that your company's policies comply with the NLRA. We also will help you develop communication channels with your employees with the goal of reducing the possibility that they will feel a need to bring their concerns to a union. And if your company wishes to remain union-free, you can rely on our years of experience for consultation on how to legally communicate that position to your employees.

Guiding Your Company Once Union Organizing Has Begun

When a union seeks to organize, your need for resourceful counsel intensifies. Holland & Knight will help your company explore a full range of union avoidance options. If it makes business sense, we will help you structure procedures to recognize the union legally. Whether or not this is the case, we understand that in union organizing situations, legitimate disciplinary actions often are challenged as discriminatory attempts to penalize union activity. You can count on us for drawing on our decades of experience in this area to document these actions to help reduce your risk – and as defense counsel should any unfair labor practice charges arise.

Advice on NLRB and RLA Elections

When a union seeks an NLRB or RLA election, we will advocate for your company to ensure that any union election occurs in an appropriate bargaining unit, one that will not conflict with the way you run your business. When union elections occur, we can help ensure that they are conducted fairly and challenge those elections that are not.

Guiding Your Company Once a Union Has Been Formed

If a union has been formed, our labor law attorneys will counsel you on all facets of the relationship, including collective bargaining, contract negotiations and administration, grievance arbitrations, unfair labor practice proceedings, strike preparation and picketing control, reductions in force, and plant closings, relocations or acquisitions. And you can count on our Labor, Employment and Benefits Group's commitment to providing you sound advice on how to meet your business goals – as well as your legal and contractual obligations to the union.

Unions in Higher Education

Union organizing efforts at colleges and universities are becoming more prevalent and in recent years have focused on adjunct positions. Adjunct organizing is driven by concerns over compensation, benefits, workloads and job security. As these unionization efforts increase, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) continues to scrutinize employer policies and create new laws that challenge traditional views of labor relations. It has never been more critical for colleges and universities to understand and prepare for the full range of potential union issues on campus. Learn how Holland & Knight Labor and Employment and Education attorneys can assist.