Court Grants Rehearing on Whether Right to Privacy Prevents Release of Non-Member Employee Addresses to Union

County of Los Angeles v. Los Angeles County Employee Relations Commission (Court of Appeal Case No. B217668) (Issued on 12/14/10; Rehearing granted on 1/11/11)

I discussed this case in a prior blog post. (Click here for prior post) In short, the Court of Appeal held that under California’s right to privacy, non-union members of a bargaining unit (i.e. agency fee payers) have a reasonable expectation of privacy that their personal information will remain confidential.  The Court held that before the home addresses of non-union members can be released, the employer must provide these employees with notice and an opportunity to object to the disclosure of their personal information.

After this ruling was issued, the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) filed a petition for rehearing. On January 11, 2011, the Court of Appeal granted the request for rehearing with the following order:

“In order to allow sufficient time for consideration of the issues raised in the petition for rehearing filed by real party in interest and respondent Service Employees International Union, Local 721, and in order to obtain an answer to the petition for rehearing from appellant the County of Los Angeles, Chief Executive Office, the court grants rehearing on its own motion as of this date. Appellant has 15 days from the date of this order file and serve an answer to the petition for rehearing. (Cal. Rules of Court, rule 8.268.) Klein, P.J., Croskey, J., Aldrich, J.)”

Under Rule 8.268, subdivision (d), of the California Rules of Court, “An order granting a rehearing vacates the decision and any opinion filed in the case and sets the cause at large in the Court of Appeal.”  Accordingly, the underlying published decision in this case has been vacated.

Comments:

It’s rare for a court to grant a petition for rehearing. It’s not clear from Court’s order whether the Court is focused on a specific part or section of the decision. Without knowing more it’s hard to speculate how the Court may rule on rehearing the case. As soon as I know more I’ll post another entry.

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