29 U.S. Code § 169 - Employees with religious convictions; payment of dues and fees

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Any employee who is a member of and adheres to established and traditional tenets or teachings of a bona fide religion, body, or sect which has historically held conscientious objections to joining or financially supporting labor organizations shall not be required to join or financially support any labor organization as a condition of employment; except that such employee may be required in a contract between such employees’ employer and a labor organization in lieu of periodic dues and initiation fees, to pay sums equal to such dues and initiation fees to a nonreligious, nonlabor organization charitable fund exempt from taxation under section 501 (c)(3) of title 26, chosen by such employee from a list of at least three such funds, designated in such contract or if the contract fails to designate such funds, then to any such fund chosen by the employee. If such employee who holds conscientious objections pursuant to this section requests the labor organization to use the grievance-arbitration procedure on the employee’s behalf, the labor organization is authorized to charge the employee for the reasonable cost of using such procedure.


(July 5, 1935, ch. 372, § 19, as added Pub. L. 93–360, § 3,July 26, 1974, 88 Stat. 397; amended Pub. L. 96–593, Dec. 24, 1980, 94 Stat. 3452.)

1980—Pub. L. 96–593inserted reference to nonlabor organization and provisions respecting charges to employee for use of grievance-arbitration procedure, and struck out applicability of provisions to employees of health care institutions only.
Effective Date

Pub. L. 93–360, § 4,July 26, 1974, 88 Stat. 397, provided that: “The amendments made by this Act [enacting this section and section 183 of this title and amending sections 152 and 158 of this title] shall become effective on the thirtieth day after its date of enactment [July 26, 1974].”

The table below lists the classification updates, since Jan. 3, 2012, for this section. Updates to a broader range of sections may be found at the update page for containing chapter, title, etc.

The most recent Classification Table update that we have noticed was Tuesday, August 13, 2013

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29 USCDescription of ChangeSession YearPublic LawStatutes at Large


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