NLRB Ruling Regarding the Use of Temporary Employees

In a recent ruling the NLRB substantially changed its standard for determining the status of “joint-employers.”  Previously the NLRB recognized that employers were only responsible for employees under their direct control.  The new decision came in a case involving Browning-Ferris Industries of California.

As stated on the NLRB’s website “In the decision, the Board applies long-established principles to find that two or more entities are joint employers of a single workforce if (1) they are both employers within the meaning of the common law;  and (2) they share or codetermine those matters governing the essential terms and conditions of employment. In evaluating whether an employer possesses sufficient control over employees to qualify as a joint employer, the Board will – among other factors — consider whether an employer has exercised control over terms and conditions of employment indirectly through an intermediary, or whether it has reserved the authority to do so. ”

The result is that employers may now be held responsible for actions of the “Temp” companies who provide them with workers.  This means companies can be liable for actions they do not control.  Many construction companies use “Temp” services to supplement their workforce and avoid the costs related to hiring employees.  Given this change in the law, companies should consult with their “Temp” services, review their contracts with those services and consider the additional risks (fines, wage lawsuits, NLRB complaints, etc.).

For further information about this issue and other business, employment and construction matters please contact our attorneys (Pat Durazzo, Neal Eckel or Eric Hawkins) at 520-792-0448 or

Durazzo, Eckel & Hawkins provides comprehensive legal services for construction and business clients, including representation before the NLRB, the courts and in other administrative matters.  Our offices are in Tucson, Arizona but we handle cases throughout Southern Arizona, Tucson and Phoenix.



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Eric Hawkins received his B.A. from the University of Arizona, and his J.D. from the University of Arizona College of Law. Eric has been with the firm since his admission to the bar in 2006, and became a partner in 2011. Eric practices primarily in the areas of Construction law, Employment law, and Business law. This work includes contract preparation and review, partnership agreements, construction collection claims, Registrar of Contractors matters and disputes both in and out of the courtroom. Over the past five years Eric has successfully litigated several cases involving business fraud, construction defects, and employment disputes. Eric has worked with the Alliance of Construction Trades in Tucson, and represents subcontractors and suppliers in the organization. Eric has written numerous articles on various issues including indemnification, construction contracts, insurance law and employment practices.