University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc. v. NLRB IM-DC-0005
Docket / Court 21-CA-26630 (NLRB) ( No Court )
State/Territory District of Columbia
Case Type(s) Immigration
Attorney Organization MALDEF
Case Summary
In this case, Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc. v. NLRB, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that federal immigration law prohibited awarding undocumented immigrant workers back pay under the National Labor Relations Act.

This case arose when Hoffman Plastic Compounds fired José Castro and ... read more >
In this case, Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc. v. NLRB, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that federal immigration law prohibited awarding undocumented immigrant workers back pay under the National Labor Relations Act.

This case arose when Hoffman Plastic Compounds fired José Castro and others for union activities in 1989. During a series of administrative proceedings before the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB), it was determined that Castro was an undocumented immigrant who had used fake papers to gain employment. Castro was awarded some back pay (for the period beginning on date of his illegal termination until Hoffman discovered he was unauthorized to work). See Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc., 306 N.L.R.B. 100, 1992 WL 14561 (1992); Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc., 314 N.L.R.B. 683, 685, 1994 WL 397901 (1994); Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc. 326 N.L.R.B. No. 86, 1998 WL 663933 (Sept. 23, 1998).

Hoffman appealed to the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, arguing that the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 ("IRCA") and the case Sure-Tan, Inc. v. NLRB, 467 U.S. 883, 104 S.Ct. 2803, 81 L.Ed.2d 732 (1984), barred awards of any backpay to undocumented workers. A panel of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed, Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc. v. N.L.R.B., 208 F.3d 229 (D.C.Cir. 2000), but rehearing en banc was granted and the judgment vacated. Hoffman Plastic Compound, Inc. v. N.L.R.B., 2000 WL 985015 (D.C.Cir. 2000). On rehearing en banc, the Court held that a worker's undocumented status did not render him ineligible to obtain backpay as a remedy for an employer's violation of the NLRA. Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc. v. N.L.R.B., 237 F.3d 639 (D.C.Cir. 2001). The Supreme Court granted certiorari, Hoffman Plastic Compound, Inc. v. N.L.R.B., 533 U.S. 976, 122 S.Ct. 23, 150 L.Ed.2d 804 (2001) and reversed. Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc. v. N.L.R.B., 535 U.S. 137, 122 S.Ct. 1275, 152 L.Ed.2d 271 (2002). The Supreme Court (Chief Justice Rehnquist) held that the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA) foreclosed an award of backpay under the NLRA to undocumented alien works who had never been legally authorized to work in the U.S.



On remand, the District Court entered judgment in favor of the employer Hoffman. See Hoffman Plastic Compound, Inc. v. N.L.R.B., 2002 WL 1974040 (D.C.Cir. Aug 27, 2002) and Hoffman Plastic Compound, Inc. v. N.L.R.B., 2002 WL 1974028 (D.C.Cir. Aug 27, 2002).

Dan Dalton - 01/03/2007


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Immigration
Employer sanctions
Employment
Undocumented immigrants - rights and duties
Special Case Type
Out-of-court
Causes of Action National Labor Relations Act
Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA)
Defendant(s) National Labor Relations Board
Plaintiff Description Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc.
Indexed Lawyer Organizations MALDEF
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer No
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Case Closing Year 2002
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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  The Oyez Project, Hoffman Plastic Compounds, Inc. v. NLRB, 535 U.S. 137 (2002).
www.oyez.org
Date: Mar 27, 2002
By: Oyez Project (IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
21-CA-26630 (D.D.C.)
IM-DC-0005-9000.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/08/2002
General Documents
Decision and Order (1992 WL 14561)
IM-DC-0005-0004.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 01/22/1992
Source: Westlaw
Supplemental Decision and Order (1994 WL 397901)
IM-DC-0005-0005.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 07/29/1994
Second Supplemental Decision and Order (1998 WL 663933)
IM-DC-0005-0006.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 09/23/1998
Brief of Amici Curiae National Employment Law Project, Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund, Coalition for Jumane Immigrant Rights of Los Angeles, et al. in Support of Respondent
IM-DC-0005-0001.pdf | Detail
Date: 01/01/2000
Opinion (208 F.3d 229)
IM-DC-0005-0002.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 03/17/2000
Source: Google Scholar
Opinion (237 F.3d 639)
IM-DC-0005-0003.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 01/16/2001
Source: Google Scholar
Supreme Court Opinion (535 U.S. 137)
IM-DC-0005-0009.pdf | WESTLAW| LEXIS | Detail
Date: 03/27/2002
Source: Westlaw
Order (2002 WL 1974040)
IM-DC-0005-0007.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 08/27/2002
Opinion (2002 WL 1974028)
IM-DC-0005-0008.pdf | WESTLAW | Detail
Date: 08/27/2002
Judges Breyer, Stephen Gerald Court not on record
IM-DC-0005-0009
Edwards, Harry Thomas Court not on record
IM-DC-0005-0003 | IM-DC-0005-0007 | IM-DC-0005-0008
Garland, Merrick B. Court not on record
IM-DC-0005-0003 | IM-DC-0005-0007 | IM-DC-0005-0008
Ginsburg, Ruth Bader Court not on record
IM-DC-0005-0003 | IM-DC-0005-0007 | IM-DC-0005-0008 | IM-DC-0005-0009
Henderson, Karen LeCraft Court not on record
IM-DC-0005-0003 | IM-DC-0005-0007 | IM-DC-0005-0008
Randolph, Arthur Raymond Court not on record
IM-DC-0005-0003 | IM-DC-0005-0007 | IM-DC-0005-0008
Rogers, John M. Court not on record
IM-DC-0005-0003
Rogers, Judith Ann Wilson (D.C. Circuit)
IM-DC-0005-0002 | IM-DC-0005-0007 | IM-DC-0005-0008
Sentelle, David Bryan Court not on record
IM-DC-0005-0002 | IM-DC-0005-0003 | IM-DC-0005-0007 | IM-DC-0005-0008
Silberman, Laurence Hirsch (FISCR)
IM-DC-0005-0003 | IM-DC-0005-0007 | IM-DC-0005-0008
Stevens, John Paul Court not on record
IM-DC-0005-0009
Tatel, David S. Court not on record
IM-DC-0005-0002 | IM-DC-0005-0003 | IM-DC-0005-0007 | IM-DC-0005-0008
Williams, Neil C. III Court not on record
IM-DC-0005-0003 | IM-DC-0005-0008
Plaintiff's Lawyers Baskin, Maurice (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0005-0002 | IM-DC-0005-0003
McCortney, Ryan D. (California)
IM-DC-0005-0003
Defendant's Lawyers Armstrong, Aileen A. (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0005-0003
Block, Sharon (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0005-0002 | IM-DC-0005-0003
Burgoyne, John D. (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0005-0003
Cornnell, Fred L Jr (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0005-0003
Page, Leonard R (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0005-0003
Sher, Linda R. (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0005-0003
Other Lawyers Berra, Joseph Pacifico (Texas)
IM-DC-0005-0001
Berzon, Marsha Siegel (California)
IM-DC-0005-0002
Coppess, James B. (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0005-0003
Gold, Laurence E. (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0005-0003
Hiatt, Jonathan P. (District of Columbia)
IM-DC-0005-0003
Reif, James (New York)
IM-DC-0005-0001
Ruckelshaus, Cahterine K. (New York)
IM-DC-0005-0001
Saucedo, Leticia M. (Texas)
IM-DC-0005-0001
Smith, Rebecca Ann (Washington)
IM-DC-0005-0001
Williams, James (New York)
IM-DC-0005-0001 | IM-DC-0005-0007

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