Tuesday, August 14, 2007

2nd Cir: Annual Union Dues Objection Burdensome

Scales On the opposite side of the "opt-in" case discussed by the Supreme Court in  Davenport v. Washington Ed. Assn., Nos. 05-1589 and 05-1657 (U.S. June 14, 2007) is how unions may regulate union dues opt-out schemes. Must the objecting non-union member continue to object on a yearly basis or is once enough?

CCH Worklaw reports that in Seidemann v Bowen (2nd Cir. Aug. 1, 2007), the Second Circuit ruled that:

[a] union may not require agency fee payers to file annual objections to expenditures unrelated to the collective bargaining process . . . .  The union's procedures for dealing with agency fee payers failed to minimize the risk that objectors' First Amendment rights would be burdened.

Is filling out a form to say that you don't want to support the union in non-collective bargaining activities really that burdensome?  If the union is making it difficult on purpose than that may be one thing, but if not, what's the big deal?



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