Federal Disclosure Requirements under the LMRDA

In stark contrast to the three lines of disclosures required for public sector unions in Michigan, the LMRDA requires much more detailed reporting in a number of categories. The LMRDA has specified minimum categories of disclosure and then grants the Secretary of Labor the duty to promulgate regulations further defining “other disbursements made by it including the purposes thereof; all in such categories as the Secretary may prescribe.”[33]

The minimum categories include:

  1. The labor organization’s assets and liabilities, both at the beginning and end of the fiscal year;

  2. Receipts obtained by the labor organization, along with information identifying the source of such receipts;

  3. Salary and other disbursements to each officer of the labor organization, and the same for any employee who received $10,000 from the reporting labor organization or any affiliated labor organization;

  4. Information on loans made to officers, employees and members, including the terms of any such loans;

  5. Information on loans to any “business enterprise,” including the terms of any such loans; and

  6. “Other disbursements” as defined by the Secretary of Labor.[34]

The LMRDA further provides that the Secretary of Labor has the “authority to issue, amend, and rescind rules and regulations prescribing the form and publication of reports required to be filed.”[35] Using this authority, the Secretary of Labor has promulgated three financial reports that are to be filed by covered labor organizations. The report filed depends on the size of the reporting labor organization.

The largest labor organizations, those with annual receipts of $250,000 or more, file the most detailed financial reports on the DOL’s Form LM-2.[36] Unions that have receipts of less than $250,000 file a simplified report, the Form LM-3.[*] Smaller unions, those with receipts of less than $10,000, file an even more simplified report, the Form LM-4.[37]

Labor organizations are required to file their annual financial disclosure reports within 90 days after the end of their fiscal year.[38] For 2013, the latest year for which data is available, 4,356 labor organizations filed the Form LM-2.[39]

[*] 29 C.F.R. § 403.4(a)(1). Note that due to a drafting error in the regulatory text of the Obama administration’s Oct. 13, 2009, Final Rule, 74 Fed. Reg. 52,401, the regulatory text in this part states that the filing of the simplified report, the Form LM-3, is an option for labor organizations with receipts of less than $200,000, rather than for labor organizations with receipts of less than $250,000. The preamble, however, clearly indicates that the threshold is $250,000.