Persuader agreement, also known as the “advice exemption” or “consultant exemption,” is a legal concept that pertains to labor relations. It refers to an agreement between an employer and a third-party consultant who is hired to influence employees` decisions regarding unionization or collective bargaining.
Under the terms of a persuader agreement, the consultant is required to provide advice and strategies to the employer on how to effectively communicate with employees, as well as how to dissuade them from forming a union or engaging in collective bargaining. The employer is still responsible for making the final decisions regarding their communication with employees, but the consultant can provide guidance on the messaging and tactics.
Persuader agreements have been a controversial issue in the legal world for many years. Labor unions argue that these agreements allow employers to unfairly influence employees` decisions and prevent them from exercising their right to organize. However, proponents of the agreements argue that they are a necessary tool for employers to protect their interests and maintain their bottom line.
In 2016, the Department of Labor (DOL) issued a new rule requiring employers to report all persuader agreements to the agency. This rule was aimed at increasing transparency and accountability regarding employer-consultant relationships. However, the rule faced significant pushback from business groups and was ultimately blocked by a federal court.
Despite the controversy surrounding persuader agreements, they remain a common practice in labor relations. If you are an employer considering hiring a consultant to assist with employee communication, it is important to carefully consider the legal implications of a persuader agreement. Consulting with a knowledgeable labor law attorney can help ensure that you are in compliance with all relevant regulations and avoid any potential legal issues.
In conclusion, persuader agreements are a complex legal concept that require careful consideration before entering into. Employers and consultants alike must understand the relevant laws and regulations regarding labor relations to ensure that their actions are legal and ethical. By staying informed and seeking counsel when necessary, employers can protect their interests while respecting their employees` rights to organize and engage in collective bargaining.