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An agency shop is defined as a place of employment where workers are required to pay union dues regardless of whether they are union members. In the school environment, a union and a school board enter into agency shop agreements when employees who decline union membership but are still part of collective bargaining units are required to pay union “service fees.” The entry reviews court rulings on when such fees may be required and for what they may be used.

In the 1977 case of Abood v. Detroit Board of Education, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the legal permissibility of agency shop service fees for nonunion employees. The Court held that agency shop fees did not violate the First Amendment rights of nonunion employees. In Abood, ...

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