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Unpaid Wages

In Oregon, employers are required to pay all non-exempt employees no less than minimum wage and overtime for time required to work or otherwise permitted to work for the benefit of the employer. Subject to some limitations, salaried employees must be paid the same weekly wage without regard to how many hours they actually worked. If you have not been paid your owed wages, contact our attorney at AmicusPoint Law to learn more about your rights.  

Image by Austin Distel

The federal Fair Labor Standards Act and Oregon Wage and Hour laws require all employers to pay employees no less than minimum wage for the time an employee works for the benefit of the employer. Oregon's minimum wage is set by the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries (BOLI). The federal Department of Labor's (DOL) wage and hour division is responsible for enforcing federal wage and hour laws. 

With some limitations, most employers are required to pay hourly employees overtime for work performed over 40 hours during the work week. A "work week" is defined as a seven-day work week, such as from Monday to Sunday. For example, if an employee works 45 hours in a work week, the employee should be paid 40 hours at their regular rate and five hours at the overtime rate. 

Certain employees are exempt from being paid overtime. These type of employees must be paid a fixed weekly salary, currently $684 per week. Federal and state law limit the type of employees that can be paid on a salary basis to those employees holding certain positions, including:

  • Management employees that supervise two or more employees and have the authority to fire and hire other employees, or whose recommendation is given weight. 

  • Highly compensated employees, generally making over $107k a year. 

  • Professional employees such as attorneys, doctors, or accountants. 

  • Administrative employees whose primary duty is the performance of office or non-manual work directly related to the management or general business operations of the employer or the employer’s customers. 

  • Outside sales or computer professional employees. 

  • There are other exempt positions under the FLSA.  

If you do not fall within the limited type of employees that may be paid on a fixed salary basis, you must be paid on an hourly basis and be eligible for overtime pay. 

Payment of Wages at Termination of Employment:

In Oregon, when an employee is terminated by the employer, the employer must pay the terminated employee's final wages by the end of the following business day. When an employee quits their employment providing at least 48 hours' notice, the employer must pay their final wages on the employee's final day of employment. When an employee quits without providing at least 48 hours' advance notice, the employee's final wages are due within five business days or the next regularly scheduled payday, whichever is sooner. 

What if I am not paid my final wages on time?

If your employer fails to pay your final wages on time, you may be owed penalty wages. Under Oregon law, an employee is entitled to penalty wages at their regular hourly wage, for eight hours per day for up to 30 days. In certain instances, you may be entitled to additional liquidated damages under federal law. 

Employees may not be retaliated, reprimand, or fired because the employee inquired about their wages, how their wages are getting paid, or asked to be paid accurately and regularly.


If you were fired for having asked about your wages or have not received your final wages, contact our wage attorney at AmicusPoint law to learn more about your wage and hour rights.   

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