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Total Articles: 49

Oregon Enacts New Law Impacting Overtime and Maximum Hour Limits for Manufacturers

A new Oregon law clarifies Oregon’s daily and weekly overtime laws and sets new maximum-hour limits for certain Oregon employers. The new statute, which Oregon Governor Kate Brown signed on August 8, 2017, requires most employers in the manufacturing sector to pay employees the greater of daily or weekly overtime if an employee works more than 10 hours in a single day and more than 40 hours total in the course of a single workweek. The law also sets a firm 55-hour weekly limit for most manufacturing-sector employees.

New Oregon Law Imposes Scheduling and Working Hours Obligations on Employers

A new Oregon statute will require certain large employers to provide their Oregon employees with advance notice of their work schedules. The notice period will initially be 7 days starting next year before increasing to 14 days in 2020. “Predictive scheduling” requirements have been considered by legislatures in several states in recent years, and a number of cities have adopted predictive scheduling ordinances, but Oregon’s is the first to actually become a statewide law.

Oregon Employers Face Significant New Workplace Laws

There’s good news for Oregon employers about the recently concluded 2017 legislative session: unlike years past, there were only a very small number of workplace laws passed. In fact, the Oregon Legislature only passed four pieces of workplace legislation that are even worth discussing

Oregon Becomes First State in Nation to Enact Scheduling Legislation

Oregon has become the first U.S. state to regulate employer scheduling practices in the food service, hospitality, and retail industries. The new law, S.B. 828, will take effect July 1, 2018.

Oregon’s New Law on Overtime Calculations for Employees in Mills, Factories, and Manufacturing Establishments Expected to Change

In July 2017, the Oregon Legislature passed House Bill 3458, which is expected to be signed by Governor Kate Brown. The new law will permit employers to pay nonexempt employees in mills, factories, and manufacturing establishments the greater of daily or weekly overtime, reversing recent guidance from the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) that had required manufacturing employers to “pyramid” (i.e., pay both) daily and weekly overtime hours. However, the law will also impose new maximum limits on hours in the workweek for manufacturing employees.

Oregon Clarifies Paid Sick Leave Law

Oregon Governor Kate Brown recently signed Senate Bill 299 into law, which makes some clarifications and changes to Oregon’s Paid Sick Time law, which took effect on January 1, 2016.

Oregon to Enact Predictive Scheduling Law Affecting Retail, Hospitality, and Food Service Employers

The Oregon governor is expected to soon sign Senate Bill 828, which will impose predictive scheduling requirements on large employers in certain industries. Here are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about the new law.

Oregon Enacts Expansive Pay Equity Law

The Oregon Equal Pay Act of 2017 greatly extends pay equity protections to a variety of protected classes, prohibits employers from asking for applicants’ salary history, and expands existing remedies available to employees. House Bill 2005 also offers key protections and a safe harbor for employers.

Oregon Restricts Salary History Questions With Broad Equal Pay Law

Oregon Governor Kate Brown has signed a law that will prohibit employers from asking job applicants or employees about their salary history. Amendments to the Oregon Equal Pay Act also ban employers from seeking the salary information of prospective employees from their current or former employer.

Another Potential Landmine for Employers: Oregon Pay Equity Bill Signed by the Governor

On June 1, 2017, Governor Kate Brown signed into law House Bill 2005, which creates considerable new obligations and areas of liability for Oregon employers. The law prohibits pay discrimination on the basis of protected class, defined as race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, marital status, veteran status, disability, or age. In other words, employers may not pay employees performing comparable work at different rates of pay because of their membership in one of these protected classes. The law will further prohibit employers from screening job applicants based on current or past compensation and from determining compensation for a position based on a prospective employee’s current or past compensation. Employers will be able to inquire only about a job applicant’s salary history after making a job offer including a compensation amount.

Oregon Forges Ahead With Payroll-Deduction IRA Program Despite Adverse Congressional Action

Despite the Congressional joint resolution that nullifies the Department of Labor's (DOL) Employee Benefits Security Administration (EBSA) rule regarding state auto-enrollment IRAs, the Oregon State Treasury will proceed with its plan to roll out its OregonSaves pilot program on July 1. The Oregon Retirement Savings Board adopted final rules to implement the program.

Oregon Board Adopts Final Rules to Implement Retirement Savings Program

On April 18, 2017, the Oregon Retirement Savings Board adopted final rules to implement the Oregon Retirement Savings Program (known as “OregonSaves”) codified at 170-090-0001 et seq. OregonSaves establishes a state-sponsored payroll deduction retirement savings plan requiring Oregon employers that do not offer retirement plans to their employees to make payroll deductions from their workers’ wages into the state’s program.

Court Rejects Recent Interpretation of Oregon Overtime Laws That Would Have Required Certain Employers to Double Count Daily and Weekly Overtime

On March 9, 2017, the Multnomah County Circuit Court rejected the recent move by the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) to require Oregon’s “manufacturing establishments” to double count daily and weekly overtime for their employees under ORS 653.216 and 652.020. In December 2016, BOLI made waves by making a sudden and unexplained change to its longstanding guidance on how to calculate daily and weekly overtime in these establishments. (See coverage here).

Oregon Court Rejects BOLI’s New Guidance on Calculating Daily and Weekly Overtime for Mills, Factories, and Manufacturing Establishments

After the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) made a surprising change to its interpretation of how daily and weekly overtime should be calculated for employees who work in mills, factories, and manufacturing establishments, last week the Multnomah County Circuit Court issued an opinion rejecting BOLI’s new interpretation. In its opinion, the court held that BOLI’s original interpretation—i.e., that manufacturers are required to pay the greater of daily or weekly overtime hours worked by employees in a workweek (but not both)—was the correct way to construe manufacturers’ obligations under ORS 653.261 and 652.020.

Oregon Changes Interpretation of Overtime Laws, Advising Certain Employers to Double Count Daily and Weekly Overtime Payments

Between December 2016 and January 2017, the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) instituted a significant change in its historic treatment of the interplay between two statutes that provide for daily and weekly overtime pay.

Oregon Manufacturers May Be Eligible to Obtain Waivers From Complying With BOLI’s New Daily and Weekly Overtime Interpretation

The Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) recently made a surprising change in its interpretation of the daily and weekly overtime requirements for manufacturers. Employers may be able to obtain a waiver from complying with this new interpretation.

Oregon BOLI Updates Daily and Weekly Overtime Guidance for Manufacturers and Other Industries

The Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) has made an important change to its interpretation of the relationship between two Oregon overtime laws. Under BOLI’s new guidance, nonexempt employees who work in mills, factories, or manufacturing establishments may be entitled to both daily and weekly overtime compensation.

Portland, Oregon, Issues Rules Implementing ‘Ban the Box’

The City of Portland has issued administrative rules to the “Removing Barriers to Employment,” its ordinance aimed at removing job barriers for individuals with criminal records (Chapter 23.10 of the Portland Municipal Code). The Ordinance, which took effect on July 1, 2016, prohibits criminal history inquiries and background checks until a conditional offer of employment has been made.

Oregon OSHA's Proposed Silica Rules Comment Period Comes to a Close

On September 16, 2016, the period for public comment on Oregon OSHA’s proposed rules for respirable crystalline silica closes, and Oregon OSHA is expected to adopt the proposed rules by September 25, 2016. The proposed rules will keep Oregon OSHA in harmony with the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) adoption of more stringent silica standards earlier this year.

Oregon Law to Affect Pay Stubs, Time and Pay Records, and Wage Theft

The State of Oregon has enacted a new law, SB 1587, designed to increase transparency with respect to employee pay, prevent wage theft, and expose wage and hour violations. Generally, the law will require employers to provide additional details on itemized pay stubs and allow employees to inspect and request copies of their time and pay records. The law also provides increased enforcement measures and prohibits wage theft by public works contractors and subcontractors. Employers must comply with the new requirements, summarized below, beginning January 1, 2017.

Historic Minimum Wage Increase in Oregon

On March 2, 2016, Oregon Governor Kate Brown signed the first geographically-tiered minimum wage hike in the country. Senate Bill 1532 also gives Oregon the nation’s current highest projected state-wide minimum wage.

Oregon ‘Ban the Box’ Legislation Effective, Next is Even Tougher Portland Ordinance

Oregon law restricting employers from inquiring about a job applicant’s criminal background during the initial stages of the application process (i.e., before a job interview) went into effect on January 1, 2016. Beginning July 1, 2016, the City of Portland will take ban-the-box restrictions a few steps further, with its own ordinance.

Oregon Supreme Court Case Reminds Businesses about the Complexity of Independent Contractor Classification

Correctly classifying workers as either employees or independent contractors can be complicated and difficult. Multiple and different classification tests apply to a single working relationship – including, but not limited to, distinct tests for: (1) workers’ compensation coverage and premiums; (2) wage-and-hour and civil rights issues; (3) federal taxes; and (4) state payroll and unemployment taxes. These tests are often subjective, and at times can conflict. Additionally, misclassifying a worker as an independent contractor can result in costly audits, assessments of back taxes, and stiff penalties.

BOLI Issues Guidance on New Oregon Statewide Sick Leave Law

The Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) has issued additional guidance on complying with the new Oregon statewide mandatory paid sick leave law, Senate Bill 454, OL 2015, Ch. 537, which takes effect on January 1, 2016.

Pacific Northwest Employer Workplace News - November 2015

Oregon Sick Leave: Applicability of Requirements to Employees Occasionally Working in State Unclear Beginning January 1, 2016, Oregon will join a growing number of cities and states mandating that employers provide certain classes of employees with sick leave benefits. For the specific requirements imposed by the new legislation, including when sick leave must be paid, see our article, Oregon Enacts Paid Sick Leave.

New 2015-2016 Employment Laws for Oregon Businesses

The 2015 Oregon legislature has adjourned, but not before handing Oregon businesses a number of significant new employment laws. Below is a brief summary of the new legislation, all of which Governor Kate Brown has signed, that Oregon businesses should consider as they head into the third and fourth quarters of 2015.

The People Have Spoken, and It’s Time to Start Smokin’. . . Or Just Say No

It’s July 1, 2015, and Oregon law now allows adults to lawfully use marijuana for both medical and recreational purposes. Many employers have already faced questions from employees about the impact of the state’s new marijuana law, and many more will face such questions in the coming weeks and months. With that in mind, below is a brief Q&A (based on real questions from employers and their employees) to address some of the most common issues.

Oregon Paid Sick Leave Law Enacted

On June 22, Oregon became the fourth state (behind Connecticut, California and Massachusetts) to enact a paid sick leave law. Employers fortunately have time to become compliant as the law does not take effect until January 1, 2016, and most civil penalties applicable to employer violations of the law will not be assessed until after January 1, 2017. Penalties associated with provisions prohibiting retaliation and employer absence control policies will not be assessed until after January 1, 2016.

Oregon's New Paid Sick Leave Law: An Overview

On June 22, 2015, Oregon became the fourth state to enact a statewide mandatory paid sick leave law, following California, Connecticut, and Massachusetts. The bill, signed into law by Governor Kate Brown, requires Oregon employers to provide up to 40 hours of sick leave to employees per year beginning January 1, 2016, and in most cases that leave time must be paid.

Oregon to Become the Latest State to Ban the Box

On June 16, 2015, the Oregon House passed an amended version of House Bill 3025, which will prohibit most employers from asking questions about criminal history on job applications or at any other point in the hiring process before the initial interview. Approval of House Bill 3025 follows closely on the heels of similar legislation enacted in New York City, Illinois, Montgomery and Prince George’s Counties (MD), the District of Columbia and the City of Columbia, Missouri.1 Oregon Governor Kate Brown is expected to sign the bill into law, which would become effective January 1, 2016.

Trendsetter or Outlier? Oregon Adds New Twist to Password Protection Laws

Since early 2012, 21 states have enacted some form of "password protection" law. Although these laws vary substantially by state, their common thread is the intention to restrict employers' ability to access content in applicants' and employees' restricted online accounts. These laws effectuate that intent by varying combinations of prohibitions on the following types of conduct: (a) requesting an individual's log-in credentials; (b) asking to view restricted content when accessed by the individual, i.e., "shoulder surfing"; (c) requesting an individual to accept a "friend" or "connection" request; and (d) asking an individual to change privacy settings to permit access by an employer to an account. Yet, 99% of more than 400 senior HR executives and in-house employment counsel who responded to a survey conducted by Littler Mendelson in May 2012 and again in May 2013 stated they do not ask applicants for social media passwords.

Oregon Legislature Votes to "Ban the Box"

Oregon will soon join the ranks of states with “ban the box” legislation. Provided House Bill (HB) 3025 is signed by Governor Kate Brown (which is virtually certain), the new law will regulate when Oregon employers can ask applicants to disclose criminal convictions. The effective date for the new law would be January 1, 2016.

Oregon Becomes Fourth State to Pass Paid Sick Leave Law

On June 12, 2015, the Oregon legislature passed Senate Bill 454, legislation that will require most employers with 10 or more employees in Oregon to provide employees with up to 40 hours per year of paid sick leave. As discussed below, Portland employers with six or more employees already must provide sick leave. Oregon employers with fewer than 10 employees (or six in Portland) will be required to provide up to 40 hours per year of unpaid sick leave. Once the new measure is signed into law by Governor Kate Brown as expected, Oregon will join California, Connecticut, and Massachusetts in enacting state-wide paid sick leave legislation.

Eugene, Oregon Publishes Proposed Paid Sick Leave Rules

The city of Eugene, Oregon passed a mandatory paid sick leave ordinance last July, which is set to take effect later this year. The city has now published proposed rules that provide the all-important details about how the ordinance will actually work and what employers must do to comply. Below is a brief summary of the proposed rules.

Don't Fear The Reefer, Oregon Employers: Legalization of Recreational Marijuana Will Not Impact Company Policies

On November 4, 2014, Oregon joined Colorado and Washington when voters approved a state initiative legalizing the recreational use of marijuana (Alaska passed a similar law the same day). As of July 1, 2015, it will no longer be illegal for adults over the age of 21 in Oregon to possess one ounce of marijuana in a public place and up to eight ounces in their home. The good news for employers: the new law does not change employers’ rights in any way, and your zero tolerance policies may still be enforced.

Eugene, Oregon Moving Ahead With Paid Sick Leave Ordinance

Following the lead of larger cities like Portland, Seattle, and San Francisco, the City Council of Eugene, Oregon is moving ahead with plans for a mandatory sick leave ordinance. Following the presentation of a 70-page Task Force report on June 18, the Council voted to draft a formal ordinance for consideration at its next meeting in July.

Federal Judge Approves Contractual Limitation on Time to Bring Employment Claims Under Oregon Law

A federal court in Oregon recently ruled that employment agreements may impose a reasonable limitation on the time period in which an employee may bring statutory and common law claims against his or her employer, even when that time period is shorter than the statute of limitations.

Oregon Becomes First State to Require Bereavement Leave

Effective January 1, 2014, Oregon became the first state in the nation to require employers to provide bereavement leave. The new provision, an addition to the Oregon Family Leave Act (OFLA), requires employers with 25 or more employees in the state to provide up to two weeks of unpaid time for bereavement. Additional time must be granted if multiple family members die within the same year, up to a maximum of 12 weeks of family leave per year under the OFLA.

Oregon's Minimum Wage Increases And Relaxes Direct Deposit Laws

On January 1, 2014, the Oregon minimum wage increased from $8.95 to $9.10 an hour.

Oregon’s New Bereavement Leave Benefit—What Every Employer Should Know

Effective January 1, 2014, Oregon employers subject to the Oregon Family Leave Act (OFLA) must allow eligible employees to take up to two weeks of unpaid leave to deal with the death of a family member.

Oregon - New State Law Further Regulates Hiring

Billed as a means to protect out-of-work Oregonians from discrimination, the Oregon legislature passed a new law that prohibits overt unemployment discrimination in job advertisements. Oregon has become only the second state in the country – joining New Jersey – to prohibit this practice.

Oregon Employers Have Something New To Worry About

Employers with jobs to fill have a lot to worry about. Not only are they trying to fill a void effectively, but also in the right way and without legal missteps. Experienced hiring managers are aware of dozens of questions and practices to avoid during the recruitment and interviewing process. And Oregon employers soon will face a new challenge when hiring: not discriminating against unemployed individuals.

New Oregon Employment Laws Passed in the 2011 Legislative Session

As you prepare to ring in the new year, one of your resolutions should be to update your company’s employment policies. During the 2011 legislative session, Oregon legislators passed several labor and employment related laws. Employers should take note of the following bills – all effective January 1, 2012 – and update their policies and procedures accordingly. Below is a summary of the key changes. The entire text for each bill can be found at http://www.leg.state.or.us/.

Oregon Employers Breathe Sigh of Relief: 2011 Legislative Session Concludes On Positive Note

Employers in Oregon – you have cause to celebrate, or at least breathe a sigh of relief. The Oregon state legislature recently wrapped up its 2011 session without passing any major pieces of legislation that could be considered harmful to employers. Although there are a few new statutes that will soon go into effect that may slightly alter the way you do business, the impact of these new laws are minimal. In fact, a few new laws were passed that are actually beneficial to employers.

Oregon Employers Claim Victory In Medical Marijuana Battle.

On April 15, 2010 the Oregon Supreme Court handed employers a comprehensive victory in the long-running medical marijuana battle, deciding that employers need not accommodate an employee's use of medical marijuana. The decision now means that employers can rest comfortably knowing they can consistently enforce their zero tolerance drug policies without regard to medical marijuana registry status. Emerald Steel Fabricators, Inc. v. Bureau of Labor and Industries.

New Oregon Law Prohibits Most Employment Credit Checks.

Most Oregon employers who review job applicants' credit history reports before deciding whether to hire them will no longer be able to do so as of July 1, 2010. Billed as a means to help out-of-work Oregonians find jobs more easily, the Oregon legislature passed a new law on February 22 which will greatly restrict your ability to perform credit checks on applicants and employees. Once signed into law by the Governor (which is expected), Oregon will become the third state in the country – joining Washington and Hawaii – to prohibit this common practice.

Oregon Employers Lose Latest Round of Medical Marijuana Battle.

On June 11th, the Oregon Court of Appeals dealt a blow to employers fighting medical marijuana in the workplace, letting stand an administrative decision which had granted a victory to a medical marijuana user (Emerald Steel Fabricators, Inc. v. Bureau of Labor and Industries). Although the decision was largely based on technical grounds, the Court of Appeals passed up an opportunity to side with employers and the decision may lend comfort to workers’ advocates who support looser workplace drug rules.

New Driver's License Law Will Impact Oregon Employers.

Over the weekend, the state finalized a new law that may end up having a dramatic impact on several important industries. Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski signed into effect a much stricter driver’s license requirement that forces applicants to prove American citizenship or legal immigrant status before getting a new or renewed driver’s license. It goes into effect on July 1, 2008, and could have far-reaching consequences in the agriculture, construction and hospitality industries, among others.

New And Pending Legislation Impacts Oregon and Washington Employers (pdf).

Recent legislation in Oregon and Washington will have a major impact on all Northwest employers, and there are likely more changes on the immediate horizon. This Legal Alert will point out the most significant changes to the law in both states.
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