Oregon Circuit Court Makes Critical Decision in Manufacturing Overtime Lawsuit

March, 2017

By Ryan Orr, Human Resource and Compliance Consultant
Cascade Employers Association
[email protected]

In yet another twist in the ongoing saga over manufacturing overtime in Oregon, the circuit court in the Portland Specialty Bakers case has decided in favor of the employer. In other words, the court has interpreted Oregon's manufacturing overtime law to require employers to pay only the greater of daily or weekly overtime in any given workweek, which is consistent with how Oregon manufacturers have been doing this for decades prior to BOLI's about-face interpretation in December 2016.

As of the afternoon of Friday, March 10, BOLI's Technical Assistance for Employers had not heard from the Wage and Hour Division on whether the agency plans to revert back to the old interpretation of the law or continue to enforce its new interpretation. While the decision seems obvious, it is possible that the Portland Specialty Bakers case gets appealed, and BOLI may not want to keep changing its interpretation back and forth. Additionally, SB 984 is pending, which could revise the law to make it clear that employers are required to pay only the greater of daily or weekly overtime in a workweek.

All said, while there is still some uncertainty here, it seems likely that we should have some statement from BOLI on its position relatively soon.

We, of course, will continue to monitor this situation and stay in touch with BOLI for any updates on their enforcement position. If you have any questions, please contact us.


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