Presidential Authority to Extend Deadline for Submission of an Emergency Board Report Under the Railway Labor Act

Headnotes: 

The President may require an Emergency Board under the Railway Labor Act to submit its report before the statutory deadline, but he may not extend that thirty-day deadline unless the parties involved have entered into a side agreement extending the status quo period during which they refrain from self-help.

There is substantial doubt as to whether a court would conclude that such a side agreement between the parties not to resort to self-help is equitably enforceable under the Norris-LaGuardia Act.

The President does not have the authority to impose a second status quo period by convening a second Emergency Board or reconvening the original Board.

Updated July 9, 2014