Filing Representation Cases
The Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute) sets out a specific procedure for employees to petition to be represented by a labor union and to determine which employees will be included in a "bargaining unit" that a union represents. Implementing this procedure, the FLRA conducts elections for union representation and resolves a variety of issues related to questions of union representation of employees. These issues include, for example, whether particular employees are managers or "confidential" employees excluded from union representation, whether there has been election misconduct on the part of agencies or unions, and whether changes in union and agency organizations affect existing bargaining units. Information about the procedures to follow and how the Authority has interpreted the law and regulations concerning these issues can be obtained from Authority decisions, the Office of the General Counsel Representation Manual, and from frequently asked questions about representation.
Petitions to resolve representation matters are filed with the FLRA's Regional Offices. Information that you may need about this process includes the form for filing a petition, the statutory section describing representation standards and procedures, the regulations describing the process, and the Office of the General Counsel Guidance on particular subjects. Staff in the FLRA Regional Offices will help you determine if the issue you have is one that can be resolved through this kind of petition. They may also investigate the petition, conduct meetings with individuals affected by the petition, hold hearings to resolve disputed factual issues, and conduct elections. The Regional Director of the Office concludes this process by issuing either a Decision a or a Direction of Election. The vast majority of representation petitions filed with the FLRA are resolved by the Regional Office.
A party who is not satisfied with a decision issued by a Regional Director may appeal that decision to the Authority within 60 days. The reasons to object to a decision are limited and are set out at section 2422.31 of the Authority's Regulations. Information concerning the filing of this kind of "Application for Review" is contained in the Authority's Regulations. Specific questions about appeals can be directed to the Office of Case Intake and Publication. Information concerning how the Authority has resolved specific questions appealed to it is contained in its decisions. In most cases, the Authority grants or denies petitions for review within 60 days.