Ridgewood Health Care Center, Inc. v. National Labor Relations Board

August 17, 2021

A federal appeals court ruled on Friday that an Alabama nursing home operator was not compelled to rehire and bargain with its predecessors’ unionized employees before making changes to working conditions, overturning the National Labor Relations Board’s decision.

There was no evidence to support the NLRB’s judgment that Ridgewood Health Care Center Inc’s reluctance to hire four of its predecessor’s unionized employees was motivated by anti-union animus, according to a panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Ridgewood was also exempt from bargaining with a United Steel Workers local since just 49 of the 101 workers it employed had previously worked at the home, falling just short of the requisite majority to qualify as a “successor” under federal labor law, according to the court.

As a result, the panel found it was not illegal for Ridgewood to impose new labor terms without bargaining.