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The four major sports leagues are unions, although a franchise may be in a state with a right to work or a constitutional provision. The NRL requires workers to receive at least 30 days from the date the union is hired before they can be dismissed for non-union affiliation or for paying taxes; shorter periods apply in the construction industry. The RLA gives workers 60 days to join the union. However, the union cannot require a worker to become a “reputable” member, i.e. to do more than stolen or equivalent goods. While a union-shop agreement that, on its literal terms, requires a worker to be a reputable member may appear illegal on its face and therefore unenforceable, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and the courts have interpreted these clauses uniformly so as not to require more than the law allows (for example. B payment of taxes). When a union is recognized by an employer, members have the right to take a break at a reasonable time to participate in union activities. These include: union representatives who are the subject of a trade union enterprise agreement can ask the NRL to organise a “choice of deauttorization” so that all employees in the collective agreement unit can vote on whether the clause remains in force. Such a procedure does not exist under the RLA. Under U.S. labour law, a private sector union may expel a member of an arbitrary union as long as it provides the member with the statutory minimum worker reporting and disclosure procedure (LMRDA) and does not do so for reasons prohibited by law (such as the member`s race or protected political activities within the union).

On the other hand, the union cannot require, by a union enterprise contract, that an employer dismiss a member because it does not maintain a reputable membership, unless that member has been excluded from the union because it has not paid uniformly required union dues and fees. If the union excludes a member for any reason other than non-payment of dues, it virtually terminates any right that it should have required the worker to be due after or must require that the worker be dismissed for non-compliance.