Packard Motor Car Co. v. National Labor Relations Board

330 U.S. 485 (1947)

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Packard Motor Car Co. v. National Labor Relations Board

United States Supreme Court
330 U.S. 485 (1947)

Facts

Packard Motor Car Company (Packard) (defendant) employed 1,100 foremen who supervised workmen. The foremen were supervised by Packard’s management. The Packard foremen decided to organize as a bargaining unit with the Foremen’s Association of America, a union representing supervisors. The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) (plaintiff) certified the bargaining unit, finding that it was an appropriate unit under the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA). The NLRA provided that employees, but not employers, were eligible for benefits under the act. The NLRA defined employee as any employee, and defined employer as anyone who acted solely in the interest of an employer. The NLRB reasoned that the foremen were employees because they had personal interests, such as those related to their wages and working conditions, that might conflict with the interests of Packard. Packard opposed the bargaining unit, arguing that the foremen were employers, not employees. The gist of Packard’s argument was that foremen should be considered employers to prevent the foremen from organizing and advancing their own, rather than Packard’s, interests. The NLRB ordered Packard to bargain with the foremen. The court of appeals affirmed the order. Packard appealed. The United States Supreme Court granted certiorari.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Jackson, J.)

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