When the Union Must File A Petition For Review About A Proposal

When a union puts forward a contract proposal for bargaining, and the agency says it's non-negotiable, the union can start the appeal process by filing a petition for review with the FLRA's Office of Case Intake and Publication. There are several things that the parties should know about what can prompt the proper filing of a negotiability appeal: If the union writes to the agency and asks for what's called an "allegation of non-negotiability," and the agency responds with the allegation in writing, the union has 15 days from the date of service of the allegation to file the petition at the FLRA headquarters in Washington, D.C.. If the union writes to the agency and asks for an allegation of non-negotiability, and the agency does not respond within ten days of receipt of the union's request, the union may do one of two things:

  1. ignore the agency's silence and not file a petition; or
  2. file the petition at any time after the agency's written response should have been given

If the agency states that something is non-negotiable, without being asked for its opinion by the union in writing, the union may file its petition, but it does not have to - it may keep on negotiating, since it did not ask for an allegation of non-negotiability. If the agency only says the proposal is non-negotiable orally, and not in writing, the union does not have to file its petition - it may keep on negotiating, since the allegation of non-negotiability must be in writing before a petition can be filed.