NLRB holds dues check-offs continue when CBA ends

Published: September 14, 2015

NLRB Logo; National Labor Relations BoardOn August 27, 2015, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) overturned its policy that had existed since 1962, and held that employers remain obligated to withhold from wages and remit union dues to their employees’ union, even after the expiration of a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) that creates the obligation.

Collective bargaining agreements frequently contain “dues check off” provisions, which require employers to deduct union dues from their employees’ wages, and to then forward those dues to the union. For the past 50 years, these check off provisions were among certain reciprocal contractual entitlements flowing to the union and employer that automatically terminated when a collective bargaining agreement expired. As such, they were not among other contractual provisions that pertained to the wages, benefits and other terms and conditions of employment for the bargaining unit employees that continued indefinitely after the collective bargaining agreement expired until impasse or a replacement agreement was reached. This allowed employers to stop collecting dues for unions once their contract ended.

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