How to File a Claim for Unfair Work Practices in Michigan

The Michigan Employment Relations Committee regulates employment disputes in the state of Michigan. If an employer violates the Michigan Public Employment Relations Act or the Labor Relations and Mediation Act, an employee whom the violation affects may file a claim for an unfair labor practice. MERC narrowly defines an unfair work practice as behavior related to union activities. An employee may file a claim for unfair work practices up to six months after an alleged violation occurs.


    • 1

      Download an unfair labor practice charge form from MERC's website or obtain a paper copy of the form from a MERC office. MERC maintains offices in Detroit and Lansing.

    • 2

      Complete the charge form by filling in the information about your employer or your union in sections 1 and 2. Fill in the unfair work practice violation in section 3. Fill in your contact information in section 4 and information about any related MERC cases in section 5. You may attach supplemental pages if the form does not allow enough room for you to provide your information.

    • 3

      Sign the charge form, and make at least six copies of it. Serve one copy on the opposing party -- the employer or the union -- by mailing or delivering a copy to that party. Write a statement that verifies when and how you served this copy, and attach the statement to the original charge. File the original charge and four copies with the Detroit or Lansing MERC office. Keep one copy for your records.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you wish to file a claim against both your employer and your union, you must submit two separate charge forms.
  • MERC will assign your claim to an Administrative Law Judge who will notify you of next steps after you file your claim, such as setting a date for a hearing.
  • If you disagree with the judge's decision, you may appeal to the Michigan Court of Appeals. If you disagree with the Court of Appeals' decision, you may ask the Michigan Supreme Court to review the decision. (Ref 1, page 5)
  • Your charge will be dismissed if you wait more than six months to file your claim.
  • You may represent yourself at an unfair labor practice hearing, but you may wish to hire an attorney to represent you. (Ref 1, page 5)
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