ABF Freight Systems, Inc. v. National Labor Relations Board

PETITIONER: ABF Freight Systems, Inc.
RESPONDENT: National Labor Relations Board
LOCATION: Pomona Police Department

DOCKET NO.: 92-1550
DECIDED BY: Rehnquist Court (1993-1994)
LOWER COURT: United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit

CITATION: 510 US 317 (1994)
ARGUED: Dec 01, 1993
DECIDED: Jan 24, 1994

ADVOCATES:
Daniel R. Barney - for the American Trucking Associations as amicus curiae urging reversal
Deputy Solicitor General Wallace - argued the cause for respondent
E. Carl Uehlein, Jr. - for the Chamber of Commerce of the United States et al. as amici curiae
James D. Holzhauer - for the American Trucking Associations as amicus curiae urging reversal
John V. Jansonius - on behalf of the Petitioner
Joseph E. Santucci, Jr. - for the Chamber of Commerce of the United States et al. as amici curiae
Lawrence G. Wallace - on behalf of the Respondent
Mona C. Zeiberg - for the Chamber of Commerce of the United States et al. as amici curiae
Robin S. Conrad - for the Chamber of Commerce of the United States et al. as amici curiae
Stephen A. Bokat - for the Chamber of Commerce of the United States et al. as amici curiae
Timothy S. Bishop - for the American Trucking Associations as amicus curiae urging reversal

Facts of the case

After employee Michael Manson gave a false excuse for being late to work, ABF Freight System, Inc. (ABF) fired him for tardiness. Manson repeated his false excuse while under oath at a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge, during which he argued that ABF had fired him in retaliation for his previous union activities. The National Labor Relations Board reversed the judge, ruling that ABF had used Manson's tardiness as a pretext to fire him. The Board reinstated him with backpay.

ABF appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, claiming that the Board could not reinstate an employee who lied under oath. The Tenth Circuit ruled that the Board could determine whether or not to pardon Manson for giving a false excuse.

Question

Can the National Labor Relations Board grant reinstatement with backpay to an employee who lied under oath during his administrative hearing?

Media for ABF Freight Systems, Inc. v. National Labor Relations Board

Audio Transcription for Oral Argument - December 01, 1993 in ABF Freight Systems, Inc. v. National Labor Relations Board

Audio Transcription for Opinion Announcement - January 24, 1994 in ABF Freight Systems, Inc. v. National Labor Relations Board

William H. Rehnquist:

In 92-1550, ABF Freight Systems versus NLRB, the National Labor Relations Board found that petitioner had committed an unfair labor practice.

As a remedy for the wade violation, the Board ordered the petitioner, who is an employer, to reinstate one of its former employees with backpay.

The administrative law judge had found that the employee had given certain false testimony on an issue that turned out to be not material to the Board's decision.

The ourt of Appeals enforced the Board's order and we granted certiorari to consider whether the employee's false testimony should have precluded the Board from granting him relief.

For reasons stated in an opinion of the Court uttered by Justice Stevens, we hold that the Board acted within the discretion granted to it by the statute, and therefore, we affirm the judgment of the Court of Appeals.

Justice Kennedy has filed a concurring opinion; Justice Scalia has filed a separate opinion concurring in the judgment in which he is joined by Justice O'Connor.