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Can we get rid of a union and replace it with a different one while under contract

La Crosse, WI |

A year and a half ago, our previous company went bankrupt, and we were bought out by a new company that has a union contract. We were not union before this company. Ever since the new company took over, we have not seen a single person from the union show up at our location, almost nobody received a copy of the contract, and they seem very evasive and will generally lean towards siding with the employer if there is a grievance. Currently this union has a collective bargaining agreement with the employer until March 2015. Being that we were hired on by this company, we had no say in having this union represent us apart from filling out the cards as part of the hiring packet. What can we do to get this union in check, or can we decertify on a local level and bring a different union in?

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Attorney answers 1


You need to consult a labor attorney in your state to discover the specific state rules that govern decertifying a union. Generally the decertification election has to be within a specific time frame prior to the expiration of a current agreement. You will need a specific percentage of current employers to sign that they want to decertify the current union. If you have another union in mind already they could provide you with assistance in the decertification process and how to get a new union in place. Once enough employees, usually 10-30%, have indicated they want to decertify the union the local state employment division or the NLRB will hold an election. If a majority vote to decertify then the union is out. If they vote for a new union then that union will take over. Because these actions can be handled either by state employment relations boards, or the National Labor Relations Board you will need to consult a local labor attorney.
All the best!

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