Missouri right-to-work law set to take effect

by Bob Kaiser, Daniel O’Toole, and Jeremy Brenner

Missouri’s right-to-work law will take effect on August 28. The law was passed by the legislature and signed by Governor Eric Greitens in February.

Here are some key provisions of the law:

  • No employee may be required to become or remain a member of a union as a condition of employment.
  • No employee may be required to pay dues or fees to a union as a condition of employment.
  • Any agreement—e.g., a collective bargaining agreement (CBA)—that violates the law is unlawful, null and void, and of no legal effect.
  • Any person injured as a result of a violation of the law may recover damages, including attorneys’ fees.
  • The law doesn’t apply to federal employees or employees covered by the federal Railway Labor Act.
  • The law doesn’t apply to a CBA entered into before the law’s effective date, but it does apply to a CBA upon its renewal, extension, amendment, or modification after the effective date.

The law doesn’t terminate an employer’s legal obligation to bargain with a union that represents an employee bargaining unit. And it doesn’t terminate a union’s obligation to provide fair representation to all employees in the bargaining unit it represents. Also, employees in a bargaining unit who choose not to pay union dues are still covered by the CBA.

For more information on Missouri’s right-to-work law, see the February 2017 issue of Missouri Employment Law Letter.

Bob Kaiser, Daniel O’Toole, and Jeremy Brenner are attorneys with Armstrong Teasdale in St. Louis. They can be reached at rkaiser@armstrongteasdale.com, dotoole@armstrongteasdale.com, and jbrenner@armstrongteasdale.com.

About Missouri Employment Law Letter:
Excerpted from Missouri Employment Law Letter written by attorneys at the law firm of Armstrong Teasdale LLP. MISSOURI EMPLOYMENT LAW LETTER is intended for general information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. The reader should consult qualified legal counsel to determine how laws apply to specific situations. Contact the attorneys at Armstrong Teasdale LLP.
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