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The National Labor Relations Board had a busy January, and that’s mostly good news for employers. According to Jackson Lewis law firm, the board revised its standards for independent contractors and what constitutes “concerted activity” under the National Labor Relations Act, among other things.

In its “Top Five Labor Developments for January,” Jackson Lewis also covered a couple of General Counsel memos and noted a drop in union membership for 2018.

On the employee-vs.-contractor issues, the labor board returned to a standard held prior to 2014 that emphasized the importance of entrepreneurial opportunity in determining if an employee can be correctly classified as an independent contractor.

While the ruling may be helpful to employers under federal law, New Jersey has its own criteria known as the ABC test, which can come to different conclusions.

The firm also highlighted a report by the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics that found the private sector unionization rate fell to 6.4 percent in 2018, from 6.5 percent in 2017. Read more.