The See-Saw Continues At The NLRB – New Ruling On Stopping Union Dues Checkoff

Volume: 21 | Issue: 43
October 12, 2022

The National Labor Relations Board (“Board”) has decided that an employer may not stop collecting union dues after a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) expires and must instead continue to honor a dues checkoff arrangement until the parties have reached a successor agreement or a valid overall bargaining impasse permits unilateral action by the employer. The Board will apply this decision retroactively to pending cases.

A dues checkoff requires an employer, when authorized by the employee, to automatically deduct union dues from the employee’s wages and remit them to the union. Since 1962, the Board allowed an employer to stop deducting union dues from employees’ paychecks when a CBA expired. But the rule changed during President Obama’s term and again during President Trump’s term.

Now, under President Biden, the Board has determined that an employer must maintain the status quo with a dues checkoff arrangement when a contract expires. In Valley Hospital Medical Center, Inc., the Board decided that because a dues checkoff is a mandatory subject of bargaining that becomes part of employees’ terms and conditions of employment, an employer cannot change it unilaterally when a contract expires. The Board explained that this result “implements the [National Labor Relations] Act’s policy goals of both encouraging the practice and procedure of collective bargaining and of safeguarding employees’ free choice in the exercise of their Section 7 rights.”

KZA attorneys are well versed in labor law and the Board’s see-sawing decisions. If you have questions about contract expiration, checkoffs, or this case in particular, please contact us.

KZA Employer Report articles are for general information only; they are not intended and should not be construed to be legal advice. Reading or replying to such articles does not establish an attorney-client relationship. In addition, because the subject matters and applicable laws discussed in Employer Report articles are often in a state of change and not always applicable to every type of business entity or organization, readers should consult with counsel before making decisions based on the same.

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