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Goldwater Institute Argues Attorneys Shouldn't Have To Pay State Bar Dues

A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit that challenged the Louisiana State Bar Association’s monopoly over who can practice law in the state. The case is related to ongoing litigation in Arizona.

Conservative think tank the Goldwater Institute of Arizona is backing litigation about legal requirements to pay union dues. They argue that a Supreme Court ruling on public sector unions also applies to bar associations.

In the unions' case, the ruling prohibited members from being forced to pay dues. The Goldwater Institute says the same rule should apply for attorney dues. Thirty-one states require practicing attorneys to become members of their state bar associations.

The Louisiana attorneys have now filed an appeal after losing their lawsuit against the state bar association. They say more than half of the association's total revenue comes from member dues.

Heather van Blokland was a host at KJZZ from 2016 to 2021.