What happens if an employer and union reach a deadlock in negotiations and cannot agree on all the terms of the collective bargaining agreement?

Author: Irene Stavrellis Englert, Englert Legal Consulting, LLC

When the employer and union reach a deadlock in the negotiations over mandatory subjects of bargaining, it is referred to as impasse. When impasse is reached, the duty to negotiate is suspended and an employer is permitted to unilaterally implement the terms of its final proposal. In other words, an employer may implement any changes to working conditions that it had proposed to the union during negotiations without the union's approval. However, an employer is prohibited from offering its employees greater benefits or employment terms different from those it had proposed during negotiations.