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A system whereby an employer regularly deducts a portion of an employee's wages to pay union dues or initiation fees.

The checkoff system is very attractive to a union since the collection of dues can be costly and time-consuming. It prescribes the manner in which dues are paid by deductions in earnings rather than through individual checks sent directly to the union. Unions are thereby assured of the regular receipt of their dues.

A dues checkoff system is only lawful when voluntarily authorized by an employee. Unions have attempted to make alternatives to checkoff more onerous by requiring such practices as in-person delivery of dues checks to out-of-state locations. The national labor relations board has held that this type of inducement to checkoff is unlawful, however, as is the attempt by a union to collect assessments extending beyond periodic dues.


Labor Law; Labor Union.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
"I let them know their checkoff dollars are being well spent when they are allocated to the Council," Huddleston said.
"The irony of checkoff dollars is that you often see a lot of money poured into the same products the USDA is telling you to avoid or limit," she said.
* The CBB must be allowed to enter into checkoff contracts with non-policy organizations and private companies, such as advertising agencies and public relations firms, in order to prevent policy-driven organizations from using checkoff dollars to fund overhead for political activity.
The NCBA does not receive "nearly 99 percent" of the checkoff dollars contracted through the Cattlemen's Beef Board, as stated in the article.
While United States beef can be specifically promoted in foreign countries where it is widely acknowledged as the best beef in the world, use of checkoff dollars to specifically promote United States beef domestically is forbidden--only the generic product "beef" can be promoted with checkoff dollars in the United States.
Jim Henger, NCBA's executive director of retail marketing said: "Steve and Wendy's experience in combination with the retail marketing managers allows us to maximize checkoff dollars and help our retail partners increase beef demand in their stores."
In Oklahoma, checkoff dollars are funneled through the Oklahoma Beef Council.
Created by the federal government in 1991, the United Soybean Board (USB) oversees the investment of soybean checkoff dollars to benefit all U.S.
Promotions, paid for by Pork Checkoff dollars, also increase as the weather turns cooler.
For its part, USB issued a statement which said: "The allegations made by [ASA] against the [USB] regarding mismanagement of farmer checkoff dollars are categorically untrue.
beef at a record high of 89 percent, Sauer says: "That's the work of the checkoff dollars, and since the meat case is one of the supermarkets' primary draws, I would suspect a massive decline in beef sales could severely impact their business."
"It's very important to be strategic in how we spend our producers' checkoff dollars to get the best bang for their buck," Buckmaster said.