U.S. Code of Federal Regulations

Regulations most recently checked for updates: Apr 01, 2023

§ 1425.1 - Definitions.

As used in this part:

(a) The Service means Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service.

(b) Party or Parties means (1) any appropriate activity, facility, geographical subdivision, or combination thereof, of an agency as that term is defined in 5 U.S.C. 7103(3), or (2) a labor organization as that term is defined in 5 U.S.C. 7103(4).

(c) Third-party mediation assistance means mediation by persons other than FMCS commissioners.

(d) Provide its services means to make the services and facilities of the Service available either on its own motion or upon the special request of one or both of the parties.

§ 1425.2 - Notice to the Service of agreement negotiations.

(a) In order that the Service may provide assistance to the parties, the party initiating negotiations shall file a notice with the FMCS Notice Processing Unit, 2100 K Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20427, at least 30 days prior to the expiration or modification date of an existing agreement, or 30 days prior to the reopener date of an existing agreement. In the case of an initial agreement the notice shall be filed within 30 days after commencing negotiations.

(b) Parties engaging in mid-term or impact and/or implementation bargaining are encouraged to send a notice to FMCS if assistance is desired. Such notice may be sent by either party or may be submitted jointly. In regard to such notices a brief listing should be general in nature e.g., smoking policies, or Alternative Work Schedules (AWS).

(c) Parties requesting grievance mediation must send a request signed by both the union and the agency involved. Receipt of such request does not commit FMCS to provide its services. FMCS has the discretion to determine whether or not to perform grievance mediation, as such service may not be appropriate in all cases.

(d) The guidelines for FMCS grievance mediation are:

(1) The parties shall submit a joint request, signed by both parties requesting FMCS assistance. The parties agree that grievance mediation is a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the steps of the contractual grievance procedure.

(2) The grievant is entitled to be present at the grievance mediation conference.

(3) Any times limits in the parties labor agreement must be waived to permit the grievance to proceed to arbitration should mediation be unsuccessful.

(4) Proceedings before the mediator will be informal and rules of evidence do not apply. No record, stenographic or tape recordings of the meetings will be made. The mediators notes are confidential and content shall not be revealed.

(5) The mediator shall conduct the mediation conference utilizing all of the customary techniques associated with mediation including the use of separate caucuses.

(6) The mediator had no authority to compel resolution of the grievance.

(7) In the event that no settlement is reached during the mediation conference, the mediator may provide the parties either in separate or joint session with an oral advisory opinion.

(8) If either party does not accept an advisory opinion, the matter may then proceed to arbitration in the manner form provided in their collective bargaining agreement. Such arbitration hearings will be held as if the grievance mediation effort had not taken place. Nothing said or done by the parties or the mediator during the grievance mediation session can be used during arbitration proceedings.

(9) When the parties choose the FMCS grievance mediation procedure, they have agreed to abide by these guidelines established by FMCS, and it is understood that the parties and the grievant shall hold FMCS and the mediator appointed by the Service to conduct the mediation conference harmless of any claim of damages arising from the mediation process.


Complete this form, please follow these instructions.

In item #1. Check the block and give the date if this is for an existing agreement or reopener. The FLRA Certification number should be provided if available. If not known, please leave this item blank. Absence of this number will not impede processing of the Form.

In item #2. If other assistance in bargaining is requested please specify: e.g.; impact and implementation bargaining (I&I) and/or mid-term bargaining and provide a brief listing of issues, e.g. Smoking, Alternative Work Schedules (AWS), ground rules, office moves, or if desired, add attached list. This is only if such issues are known at time of filing.

In item #3. Please specify the issues to be considered for grievance mediation. Please refer to FMCS guidelines for processing these requests. Please make certain that both parties sign this request!

In item #4. List the name of the agency, as follows: The Department, and the subdivision or component. For example: U.S. Dept. of Labor, BLS, or U.S. Dept. of Army, Aberdeen Proving Ground, or Illinois National Guard, Springfield Chapter. If an independent agency is involved, list the agency, e.g. Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) and any subdivision or component, if appropriate.

In item #5. List the name of the union and its subdivision or component as follows: e.g. Federal Employees Union, Local 23 or Government Workers Union, Western Joint Council.

In item #6. Provide the area where the negotiation or mediation will most likely take place, with zip code, e.g., Washington, D.C. 20427. The zip code is important because our cases are routed by computer through zip code, and mediators are assigned on that basis.

In item #7. Only the approximate number of employees in the bargaining unit and establishment are requested. The establishment is the entity referred to in item 4 as name of subdivision or component, if any.

In item #8. The filing need only be sent by one party unless it is a request for grievance mediation. (See item 9.)

In item #9. Please give the title of the official, phone number, address, and zip code.

In item #10. Both labor and management signatures are required for grievance mediation requests.


Send original to F.M.C.S.

Send one copy to opposite party.

Retain one copy for party filing notice.

[60 FR 2509, Jan. 10, 1995]

§ 1425.3 - Functions of the Service under title VII of the Civil Service Reform Act.

(a) The service may provide its assistance in any negotiation dispute when earnest efforts by the parties to reach agreement through direct negotiation have failed to resolve the dispute. When the existence of a negotiation dispute comes to the attention of the Service through a specific request for mediation from one or both of the parties, through notification under the provisions of § 1425.2, or otherwise, the Service will examine the information concerning the dispute and if, in its opinion, the need for mediation exists, the Service will use its best efforts to assist the parties to reach agreement.

(b) The Service may, at the outset of negotiations or at any time in the dispute, set time limits on its participation. If no settlement of the dispute is reached by the expiration of the time limits, the Service may make suggestions for settlement to the parties. If suggestions for settlement made by the Service are not accepted by the parties within time limits set by the Service, the matter may be referred to the Federal Services Impasses Panel (FSIP).

§ 1425.4 - Duty of parties.

It shall be the duty of the parties to participate fully and promptly in any meetings arranged by the Service for the purpose of assisting in the settlement of a negotiation dispute.

§ 1425.5 - Referral to FSIP.

If the mediation process has been completed and the parties are at a negotiation impasse, the Service or the parties may request consideration of the matter by the Federal Services Impasses Panel. The Service shall not refer a case to FSIP until the mediation process has been exhausted and the parties are at a negotiation impasse.

§ 1425.6 - Use of third-party mediation assistance.

If the parties should mutually agree to third-party mediation assistance other than that of the Service, both parties shall immediately inform the Service in writing of this agreement. Such written communication shall be filed with the regional director of the region in which the negotiation is scheduled, and shall state what alternate assistance the parties have agreed to use.