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Title 9: Criminal

9-136.000 - Labor And Pension/Welfare Reporting And Record keeping

9-136.010 Introduction
9-136.030 Investigative and Supervisory Jurisdiction

9-136.010 - Introduction

This chapter addresses violations of 29 U.S.C. § 439, and 18 U.S.C. § 1027. Section 439(a) prohibits any person from willfully failing to comply with the reporting and disclosure provisions imposed by the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act (LMRDA) (29 U.S.C. § 401, et seq.) on labor unions, labor union officials, employers, and labor relations consultants in the private sector. Section 439(b) generally applies to the making of false statements in reports filed by such persons with the Department of Labor. Section 439(c) proscribes the willful falsification or destruction of documents which the LMRDA requires such persons to maintain.

Section 1027 prohibits any person from knowingly making false statements or failing to disclose required information in documents required by Title I of Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA). These documents include reports which ERISA requires employee pension and welfare benefit plans to publish and file with the Department of Labor (29 U.S.C. § 1024), records which ERISA requires such employee benefit plans and others to maintain (29 U.S.C. § 1027), and information which must be certified to the administrator of such employee benefit plans (29 U.S.C. § 1023).

[updated January 2020]

9-136.030 - Investigative and Supervisory Jurisdiction

The Labor Management Unit of the Violent Crime and Racketeering Section, Criminal Division has supervisory authority.

Pursuant to the Memorandum of Understanding dated January 18, 2005, between the Secretary of Labor and the Attorney General, investigative authority with respect to labor reporting provisions (29 U.S.C. §§ 431 to 441) remains with the United States Department of Labor. See 29 U.S.C. § 521. However, the Memorandum permits different investigative arrangements to be made by the two Departments on a case-by-case basis. While the Department of Labor may use its investigative authority in order to pursue civil actions for injunctive and other appropriate relief with respect to reporting violations (29 U.S.C. § 440) of the LMRDA, evidence gathered during the course of such investigations which warrants consideration for criminal prosecution under the LMRDA or other Federal law must be furnished to the Department of Justice. See 29 U.S.C. § 527.

A Memorandum of Understanding dated February 9, 1975, between the Secretary of Labor and the Attorney General, refers to the authority of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to investigate violations of 18 U.S.C. § 1027.  The U.S. Department of Labor has statutory authority to investigate violations of 18 U.S.C. § 1027 as part of its authority to investigate criminal violations related to title I of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (29 U.S.C. §§ 1001 to 1191c) and “other related Federal laws, including . . .  related violations of Title 18.” See 29 U.S.C. § 1136(b), as amended by Section 805 of the Comprehensive Crime Control Act; 98 Stat. 2134-35 (1984).

Because the FBI and the Department of Labor have concurrent jurisdiction to investigate violations of 18 U.S.C. § 1027, each investigative agency should notify the appropriate United States Attorney's Office at the earliest possible stage of an investigation.  Such investigations should be closely monitored to avoid duplication of investigative effort.

[updated January 2020]