Third Party Agreement Incorporated into a Bargaining Proposal Must Be Provided to Union


The U.S. Circuit Court for the District of Columbia held that an employer must provide an unredacted copy of an agreement with a third party where such agreement was incorporated into the employer’s bargaining proposal.

In DirectSat USA LLC v. NLRB, the employer was an installation contractor with DirectTV. An issue arose during collective bargaining negotiations concerning whether future work other than installation and service of satellite television services would constitute bargaining unit work. In a proposal, the employer stated that any new work arising during the term of the collective bargaining agreement would not constitute bargaining unit work unless it was “pursuant to its Home Service Provider agreement with DirectTV.” The employer provided a heavily redacted copy of the agreement to the union, despite the union’s repeated request for the entire unredacted agreement.

The D.C. Circuit ordered the employer to provide an unredacted copy of the agreement. Although the agreement was not presumptively relevant as it did not pertain directly to the bargaining unit employees, the D.C. Circuit found that it was relevant to the union’s performance of its duties as the bargaining representative, as it was necessary for the union to evaluate the extent of the work covered by the proposal.