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Liabilities of Merged Union Carry Over to Survivor Union
Description Union failed to make pension contributions for employee. After union merged into another union, the new union denied liability. Court held that survivor union of the merger assumes debts of previous union, as would be the case with corporations.
Topic Business Organization
Key Words Surviving Corporation, Unions, Merger, Liability
C A S E   S U M M A R Y
Facts Teamsters Local Union 513 merged into Local 115 in 1992. When the merger occurred, Littlejohn, a 14 year employee of Local 513, quit and applied for a pension. The pension was denied because Local 513 did not make any contributions to the pension fund on his behalf as was required by its rules. Local 115 denied liability for Local 513's failure to contribute. Littlejohn sued. District court ruled in his favor. Teamsters union appealed.
Decision Affirmed. "We hold that when two unincorporated local unions merge, the survivor assumes the liabilities of the extinct constituent even if it does not have pre-merger notice of the debt." This is a nearly universal principle for corporations; the same logic applies to unions. Employees of unincorporated associations deserve the same protection as employees of corporations.
Citation Teamsters Pension Trust Fund of Philadelphia & Vicinity v. Littlejohn, ---F.3d--- (1998 WL 538497, 3rd Cir.)
155 F. 3d 206 (3rd. Cir., 1998)

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