Frequently Asked Questions about agency fee refunds

 

What are fair share or agency fees?

Before Janus v. AFSCME, government employees had two choices: they could become a member of the government union at their workplace and pay membership dues, or they could refuse union membership and instead pay the union a “fair share” or “agency fee.” In some cases, the non-member payment to the union was almost the same – or the same as – full union membership dues. These fees were automatically deducted from government workers’ paychecks.


Do I have to keep paying agency fees?

If you have already declined union membership and were paying fair share fees before the Supreme Court issued its ruling on June 27, 2018, then your employer should have immediately stopped collecting fees for the union from your paycheck. Check your next pay stub to ensure that the line previously noting how much you paid in agency fees or union collective bargaining now says zero. If you are still seeing fees deducted from your paycheck, that is a violation of your First Amendment rights under the Supreme Court’s Janus ruling and you should contact us right away. Our lawyers may be able to help.


Can I get my agency fees back from the union?

Because the Supreme Court has recognized that charging government employees agency fees was unconstitutional, employees who paid agency fees or fair share fees prior to the Janus decision on June 27, 2018 may be entitled to receive a refund for some or all of the union fees they paid. If you think you may be eligible, please contact us. You do not currently have to work for the government to be eligible for a refund.