2017 ORS 652.355¹
Prohibition of discrimination because of wage claim or refusal to work additional hours
  • remedy

(1) An employer may not discharge or in any other manner discriminate against an employee because:

(a) The employee has made a wage claim or discussed, inquired about or consulted an attorney or agency about a wage claim;

(b) The employee has caused to be instituted any proceedings under or related to ORS 652.310 (Definitions of employer and employee) to 652.414 (Procedure for payment from fund);

(c) The employee has testified or is about to testify in any such proceedings;

(d) The employee has inquired about the provisions of ORS 652.020 (Maximum working hours in certain industries) or has reported a violation of or filed a complaint related to ORS 652.020 (Maximum working hours in certain industries);

(e) The employee has declined to consent to work more than 55 hours in any given workweek under ORS 652.020 (Maximum working hours in certain industries) or 653.265 (Overtime for persons employed in canneries, driers and packing plants); or

(f) The employee has declined to consent to work more than 55 hours per workweek in any given workweek during an undue hardship period under ORS 652.020 (Maximum working hours in certain industries) or 653.265 (Overtime for persons employed in canneries, driers and packing plants).

(2) A violation of this section is an unlawful employment practice under ORS chapter 659A. A person unlawfully discriminated against under this section may file a complaint under ORS 659A.820 (Complaints) with the Commissioner of the Bureau of Labor and Industries. [1975 c.397 §2; 1980 c.1 §1; 2007 c.278 §1; 2017 c.685 §3]

Notes of Decisions

Ac­tion on behalf of alleged class of employes of defendant telephone company alleging sex discrimina­tion in wage rates and retaliatory acts after administrative discrimina­tion complaints were filed raised issues of statutory construc­tion more appropriately resolved by state courts. Forsberg v. Pacific Northwest Bell Telephone Co., 623 F Supp 117 (1985)

Discharge or discrimina­tion because claimant files wage claim does not require employer intent to retaliate against claimant. Brown v. American Property Manage­ment Corp., 167 Or App 53, 1 P3d 1051 (2000)

“Actual damages” resulting from discrimina­tion or discharge includes noneconomic damages. Brown v. American Property Manage­ment Corp., 167 Or App 53, 1 P3d 1051 (2000)

Request for wage increase for future work is not “wage claim.” Perri v. Certified Languages Interna­tional, LLC, 187 Or App 76, 66 P3d 531 (2003)

Where plaintiff remained on state payroll while on leave from state after assuming full-time duties as president of union and union reimbursed state for state’s pay­ments to plaintiff, state was paying plaintiff for rendering per­sonal services to union and state was not plaintiff’s employer under ORS 652.310 (Definitions of employer and employee); therefore, plaintiff did not make wage claim, as defined by ORS 652.320 (Definitions for ORS 652.310 to 652.414), against plaintiff’s employer for per­sonal services rendered to plaintiff’s employer when plaintiff initiated wage-claim ac­tion against state for unpaid overtime wages plaintiff accrued while rendering per­sonal services to union and, accordingly, plaintiff did not allege facts indicating state discriminated against plaintiff for filing wage claim for purposes of this sec­tion. Dinicola v. State of Oregon, 280 Or App 488, 382 P3d 547 (2016), Sup Ct review denied

As used in this sec­tion, “wage claim” means demand or request that employee has against employer for compensa­tion due and owing for employee’s per­sonal services; thus, where employee complained to supervisors about inadequate wages, employee’s complaints qualified for protec­tion under this sec­tion. Brunozzi v. Cable Communica­tions Inc., 851 F3d 990 (9th Cir. 2017)

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Validity of 10-hour day, 40-hour week without overtime in public employ­ment, (1972) Vol 35, p 1083

Notes of Decisions

Where employer was charged with crim­i­nal viola­tion of Massachusetts pay­ment of wages statute for failing to pay discharged employees for their unused vaca­tion time, employer’s policy of paying discharged employees for unused vaca­tion time was not “employee welfare benefits plan” under sec­tion 3 (1) of Employee Retire­ment Income Security Act of 1974 (ERISA) and crim­i­nal ac­tion to enforce that policy is therefore not foreclosed by sec­tion 514 (a) of ERISA. Massachusetts v. Morash, 490 U.S. 107, 109 S. Ct. 1668, 104 L.Ed 98 (1989)

It is unnecessary to imply private right of ac­tion for employee against secured creditor in pos­ses­sion under ORS 652.310 (Definitions of employer and employee) to 652.405 (Disposition of wages collected by commissioner when payment cannot be made to person entitled thereto) when to do so would render pro­vi­sions of ORS 652.110 (Method of paying employees) to 652.250 (Public employee’s wages as affected by absence to engage in search or rescue operation) superfluous. Stout v. Citicorp Industrial Credit, Inc., 102 Or App 637, 796 P2d 373 (1990), Sup Ct review denied

1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 652—Hours; Wages; Wage Claims; Records, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ors652.­html (2017) (last ac­cessed Mar. 30, 2018).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2017, Chapter 652, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­ano652.­html (2017) (last ac­cessed Mar. 30, 2018).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.