Phoenix

Resolving your Phoenix union dues issues

Many FIs have contacted us to report an issue with their ACFO-ACAF union dues. Much like other Phoenix issues, for many of you, you have either paid too much in union dues, too little in union dues, or none at all. While ACFO-ACAF continues to advocate for the timely, accurate administration of union dues on the Union Management Consultation Sub-Committee on Union Dues, there are some steps you can take in the meantime to resolve your dues issues.

Not sure whether your union dues payments are correct?

ACFO-ACAF union dues are $50 per month ($25 per pay period or $25 for the first two pay periods of months with three pay periods). Therefore, if you were an FI in the core public service for the entire 2018 calendar year, you should have paid $600 in union dues for the year. However, if you were not an FI represented by ACFO-ACAF for the entire year, based on Treasury Board’s Directive on Union Dues, here’s how to distinguish which months you should have paid:

  • ACFO-ACAF member as of the first day of the month: $50 in union dues deducted for the month. This is the case even if you are no longer an FI as of the second day of the month.
  • Appointed as an ACFO-ACAF member any other day of the month: $50 in monthly union dues deductions will begin on the first day of the following month.

How are union dues collected?

ACFO-ACAF does not initiate, stop or modify union dues payments—everything is administered through the Pay Centre or through your compensation division if your department is not serviced by the Pay Centre.

Arrears

Should you owe union dues to ACFO-ACAF in arrears, once arrears are initiated, $50 per pay would be deducted until the balance on your dues owing reaches $0, upon which you would return to $25 deductions per pay. For example, if you owe $300 in union dues to ACFO-ACAF, you will be deducted $50 per pay period for 12 pay periods (or 6 months) until the $300 is collected, upon which you will return to $25 per pay period after 6 months.

Refunds

Should ACFO-ACAF or another bargaining agent owe you union dues over-deducted in error, a compensation advisor must contact us to initiate a refund. Once it is authorized and the compensation advisor administers the refund, it would be returned to you in one lump sum on your next pay.

Why you should address union dues errors sooner rather than later

For some of you, the balance of what you are owed or what you are owing might be too small to want to take any action. However, there are many implications of incorrect union dues payments:

  • ACFO-ACAF’s union dues are among the lowest in the public service: If you have been an FI under ACFO-ACAF paying dues to the wrong union, especially over a long period of time, you could be owed a significant amount. For example, an FI who transferred to ACFO-ACAF from PIPSC on February 21, 2017, and whose union dues were never changed would be owed a refund of $518.88 as of January 2019.
  • If not treated soon, it will compound over time: While $50 is a small deduction, this can add up significantly and arrears collections can drag on for years. For example, an FI who joined ACFO-ACAF on February 21, 2017, and whose union dues deductions never started would owe $1,150 in arrears as of January 2019. If their arrears payments began in January 2019, they would pay $100 monthly in dues until December 2020.
  • Missed payments have implications on your taxes: While your union dues are tax deductible, you cannot claim them on your taxes if they do not show up on your T4 or RL-1, even if you know the correct amount you should have paid. Many members have been contacted by CRA to provide a statement from ACFO-ACAF with proof of union dues payments, but we cannot provide proof for payments that were not made.

How to resolve your union dues issues

If your department is serviced through the Pay Centre:

  1. Open a Phoenix Feedback Form in your browser
  2. Under Step 1, click the ‘I am missing pay or have a concern about my pay’ radio button
  3. Under Step 2, click Employee from the drop-down menu
  4. In the ‘What best describes your situation?’ drop-down menu, select ‘I have incorrect deductions…’ (near the bottom of the list)
  5. Include a case number if you have a case previously associated with a union dues request
  6. Provide an estimate range of how many union dues you are owing/have owed to you in the next dropdown menu.
  7. Under Step 3, list your contact information
  8. Provide a detailed breakdown of your union dues situation including the effective date of your change in union dues and any estimates of amounts that you have paid/are owed.

If your department is not serviced through the Pay Centre:

Please get in touch with your compensation division to help you resolve your union dues issues. If you are unsure of how to do so, please contact your manager.

Still unsure about your union dues?

For clarity on how much in union dues you’ve paid to ACFO-ACAF since Phoenix’s implementation, you may contact us by completing this form.

Other Phoenix pay issues

If you are in an emergency pay situation, you may be eligible to request priority pay or an emergency salary advance by contacting ACFO-ACAF at labourrelations@acfo-acaf.com with your PRI, a detailed explanation of your Phoenix pay issue and copies of all supporting documentation. You will need to have first contacted your manager, HR/Pay Liaison and, if applicable, your Trusted Source.

Best practices on general pay issues can be found here.

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