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March 15, 2023 • News

NLRB Ruling Limits Nondisparagement and Confidentiality Requirements in Severance Agreements

On Feb. 21, 2023, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) reversed its 2020 decisions in Baylor University Medical Center and IGT dba International Game Technology and ruled that offering employees a severance agreement with broad nondisparagement, nondisclosure and confidentiality provisions is unlawful because it restricts the exercise of employees’ National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) rights. The employers’ nondisparagement covenants at issue did not have any temporal restriction and failed to offer any definition for “disparagement.”  The board further ruled that such an offer is an attempt to deter employees from exercising their rights by making them feel they must give up their rights to get the benefits provided in the agreement. This decision does not apply to those employees who are excluded from the NLRA (i.e., supervisors, executives, etc.).

For more information, see the NLRB press release.

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