The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) announced a new pilot program to increase the use of alternative dispute resolution (ADR) and offer parties greater control over the resolution of their cases while saving both time and money.

Participation in the program, which was announced on July 10, 2018, is voluntary. Under the pilot, the NLRB will proactively engage parties with cases pending before the Board to determine if their case is appropriate for the ADR program and encourage parties to utilize ADR. Parties can also continue to request to use the ADR program in an effort to resolve their cases.

The NLRB has utilized its ADR program since 2005, with parties engaging in ADR reaching a settlement about 60% of the time. Use of the program is free, and a party can withdraw from participation at any time. The NLRB hopes the new efforts will increase participation and facilitate mutually acceptable settlements.