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UAW Financial Disclosures Show High Salaries and Legal Fees for Leadership

The United Automobile Workers (UAW) filed its annual LM-2 financial disclosures with the Office of Labor-Management Standards of the U.S. Department of Labor on Tuesday, June 30, revealing a detailed summary of all receipts and disbursements from the union in 2019.

UAW represented workers last year during the 40-day strike against General Motors, and strikes against Mercy Health St. Vincent and Aramark, spending approximately $80 million of UAW’s estimated $767 million dollar strike fund backed by union dues and interest. According to the Detroit Free Press, UAW spokesman Brian Rothenberg explained that the UAW has capped its strike fund at $850 million, and that when it reaches that figure, membership dues drop until the fund gets to $650 million – at which point the dues automatically increase again. 

However, the most eye-catching figure was UAW’s expenses on salaries and legal fees. The Detroit Free Press reported that the “union's annual LM-2 Labor Department filing also showed that Terry Dittes, the UAW's lead negotiator against GM, was paid a total compensation of $256,051 in 2019. Cindy Estrada, the lead negotiator for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, was paid $216,695 in total compensation. And Rory Gamble, who was the top negotiator against Ford Motor for much of last year, was paid $215,548. Gamble is now the UAW president, having replaced Gary Jones, who pleaded guilty to embezzlement in early June. The filing shows Jones was paid $340,539.”

These salaries to high ranking union officials are in addition to the legal fees related to the ongoing federal probe of the UAW, estimated to be $2.3 million to date according to the article. 

For more information on the federal probe see our previous coverage:

© 2020 BARNES & THORNBURG LLPNational Law Review, Volume X, Number 184


About this Author

Taylor Hunter, Barnes Thornburg Law Firm, Indianapolis, Labor and Employment Attorney
Staff Attorney

Taylor L. Hunter is a staff attorney and member of the Labor and Employment Law Department in Barnes & Thornburg’s Indianapolis office. Ms. Hunter focuses her practice in the area of education law with an emphasis on employment and student disability matters.

Before joining Barnes & Thornburg as a staff attorney, Ms. Hunter gained experience as an associate with an Indianapolis-based law firm where she assisted in the areas of family law, traffic issues, small claims, criminal law and litigation.