Remember the nationwide protests by McDonald’s fast food employee in the last few years? Apparently, McDonald’s took adverse employment actions against many employees who participated in these protests and other actions aimed at improving their wages and working conditions. On December 19, 2014, the National Labor Relations Board issued complaints against McDonald’s franchisees and their franchisor, McDonald’s USA, LLC. Significantly, the NLRB found that franchisees and McDonald’s USA, LLC are joint employers due to the degree of control exerted by the latter control over local franchisee operations. The NLRB had for years decided that franchises could only be labeled joint employers if they set wages and employed workers. NLRB Page.