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Understanding Oregon’s overtime laws

On Behalf of | May 9, 2023 | Employment Law

Like most states, Oregon has overtime laws employers must follow. It is important to understand these laws because they can be complex.

Knowing and following the overtime laws helps employers avoid claims from employees for unpaid overtime and ensures employees are properly paid.

Overtime can be mandatory

First, know that employers can require employees to work overtime. They can even discipline or terminate employees who do not work their scheduled overtime.

Employees can choose to work overtime if they are not required to and employers must pay them overtime pay. An employer who does not want an employee working overtime has a right to discipline the employee for still working overtime but must still pay them.

Overtime rates

Oregon overtime law requires eligible employees to be paid at a rate of 1.5 times their regular pay rate for any time they work over 40 hours in a standard work week.

A standard work week is defined as a regularly occurring seven-day period. It can start on any day or time an employer chooses but must be the same each week.

It is important to note that overtime is not always required just because an employee works more than eight hours a day. An employee can work a 12-hour day and still not be eligible for overtime if the total hours in the week are still less than 40.

Exempt employees

Certain employees are not eligible for overtime and some special rules may apply depending on the business or industry.

Generally, exempt employees who do not qualify for overtime are employees categorized as administrative, executive or professional employees. There are tests that apply to each category to determine if an employee falls under the exempt status.

There are many different factors that could affect how the overtime rules apply to your situation. A solid understanding of the overtime laws can help you avoid future problems and potential litigation.