Frankl v. HTH Corporation

Summarized by:

  • Court: 9th Circuit Court of Appeals Archives
  • Area(s) of Law: Labor Law
  • Date Filed: 09-06-2012
  • Case #: 11-18042
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Circuit Judge Schroeder for the Court; Circuit Judges Callahan and N.R. Smith.
  • Full Text Opinion

A party to labor negotiations must bargain in good faith, and cannot be allowed to profit from its own wasteful and unlawful activities that hinder the bargaining process.

Two matters have been consolidated, having arisen out of the same labor dispute between HTH Corporation and a Union. NLRB v HTH Corp. contained cross petitions from an NLRB ruling stating HTH committed unfair labor practices in violation of the NLRA. In Frankl v HTH Corp., HTH appealed from a preliminary injunction requiring certain actions from the corporation. The preliminary injunction was previously affirmed by the district court against HTH, pending final Board disposition. HTH repeated the enjoined actions, which brought them back before the Board. The district court granted a second preliminary injunction, which HTH appealed. Regarding the Act violations, there was substantial evidence supporting the Board’s 2011 ruling because HTH did not bargain in good faith. HTH had adopted a position where all bargaining would be futile and had adhered to an unreasonable position on key issues during negotiations. The company had also attempted to assert three provisions during the bargaining process that would have effectively eliminated union representation. The Board’s ruling was also upheld in regards to further Act violations by HTH when it withdrew its recognition of the Union by alleging the Union had lost majority support. HTH had no objective basis for doing so, and a subjective belief cannot be used to bolster a determination that the Union has lost support. Since HTH was going through the motions and wasting Union efforts, “HTH is not entitled to benefit financially from the consequences of the delay created by its unlawful bargaining tactics.” The second preliminary junction was affirmed, based on the likelihood the Regional Director is “to succeed on the merits of the underlying labor practice claims, that irreparable harm is likely in the absence of preliminary relief, that the balance of hardships tips in his favor, and that an injunction is in the public interest.” AFFIRMED

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