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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.

Final Regulations Clarify Some Provisions of the Oregon Sick Leave Law

Anticipation of the January 1, 2016, effective date, the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI) has published administrative rules to implement the Oregon Sick Leave Law.

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.

Portland’s New Ban-the-Box Ordinance Imposes Stricter Rules Than State Law

On November 25, 2015, the Portland City Council passed an ordinance restricting an employer’s ability to inquire regarding a job applicant’s criminal history. As of July 1, 2016, Portland employers with six or more employees will be prohibited from soliciting information regarding an applicant’s criminal background at any time prior to making a conditional offer of employment. If an employer makes a conditional offer and a subsequent background check reveals a criminal past, the employer may rescind the offer only after assessing the nature and gravity of the offense, the time elapsed since the offense, and the nature of the employment held or sought by the applicant.

Portland, Oregon Passes Broad Ban the Box Law

Portland, Oregon has enacted one of the nation's broader "ban the box" laws restricting criminal history inquiries during the hiring process. More than 110 cities and counties plus 19 states have "ban the box" measures, but many either do not apply to private employers or are limited to initial job applications.

Portland, Oregon Bans the Box

On November 25, 2015, Portland’s City Council unanimously passed new rules that will significantly affect an employer’s ability to obtain and use criminal history information in the hiring process. With these new rules, Portland joins the growing number of other cities, counties and states across the country, including Oregon,1 that have enacted similar “ban-the-box” legislation in recent years.2

Portland Passes Strict New "Ban The Box" Law

The Portland City Council passed its own version of a “Ban The Box” law right before the Thanksgiving holiday, which will require most businesses operating in the city to adjust their hiring practices. Under the strict new rules, covered Portland businesses will be prohibited from asking prospective job applicants about their criminal history until after a conditional job offer has been made. This new law will be effective July 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.

Jackson Lewis P.C. | Massachusetts | Massachusetts Law To Prohibit Inquiries Regarding Prior Salary at Interview (February 01, 2016)

Jackson Lewis P.C. | California | California Court of Appeal Holds Employee’s Agreement to Reimburse Training Costs in Event of Resignation Does Not Offend Public Policy (February 02, 2016)

Littler Mendelson, P.C. | New York | Don't Get Lost in the Weeds: Medical Marijuana is Now Legal in New York (February 01, 2016)

Ogletree Deakins | Massachusetts | Can a Massachusetts Religious School Refuse to Employ a Worker in a Same Sex Marriage (February 01, 2016)

Franczek Radelet P.C | Illinois | Definition of “Deliberate and Willful” Misconduct Under the Illinois Unemployment Insurance Act Revised and Expanded (February 04, 2016)

Littler Mendelson, P.C. | New York | New York City Expands Human Rights Law to Prohibit Employment Discrimination Against Caregivers (February 01, 2016)

FordHarrison LLP | New York | HOME CARE PROFESSIONALS SERIES Part 1 – NYS Domestic Workers' Bill of Rights (February 02, 2016)

Franczek Radelet P.C | Illinois | Illinois Supreme Court Rules Educational Employers Are Not Required to Arbitrate “Do Not Hire” Designation (February 01, 2016)

Jackson Lewis P.C. | California | What California Retail Employers Need to Know About Accommodating Pregnancy (January 29, 2016)

Schulte Roth & Zabel LLP | New York | New York City Commission on Human Rights Issues Enforcement Guidance on Fair Chance Act and Clarifies Credit Check Law Exemption (February 04, 2016)