New Legislation in Effect for Oregon’s Equal Pay Act

Employers cannot discriminate on the basis of an employee’s status.

3/5/2019

Hand holding the word "compliance."

During the 2017 legislative session, Oregon’s lawmakers passed House Bill 2005, which expanded the Oregon Equal Pay Act.

The first part, prohibiting employers from asking for an applicant’s salary history, went into effect in October of 2017. The larger part of the legislation went into effect on Jan. 1, 2019, stating that employers cannot discriminate between employees on the basis of an employee’s status as a member of a protected class in the payment of wages or other compensation for work of comparable character.  This applies to all protected classes, not just gender.

Employers are required to have a mechanism in place for setting salaries to ensure pay equity for all employees. Every position must be assessed on:

  • Knowledge
  • Responsibility
  • Effort
  • Skills
  • Working conditions

If an employer performs an equal pay analysis within three years prior to a claim being filed by an employee with the Bureau of Labor and Industry, it may avoid compensatory or punitive damages. If disparities are discovered during the analysis, no employee’s pay may be reduced to resolve the disparity. In addition, there are certain bona fide factors that would be acceptable reasons for the pay disparity, but the employer must document why. Acceptable reasons include:

  • Seniority
  • Merit systems
  • Quantity and quality of production
  • Workplace conditions
  • Travel, if necessary and regular for employee
  • Education
  • Training
  • Experience
  • Or any combination of these factors

Question of the Week

If a stop payment is placed through online services, a telephone banking product, or over the phone, is a signature required on a physical stop payment form?

No. Stop payments are effective with or without writing. If a member provides a verbal stop payment, it is effective for 14 days. If the member provides a written stop payment, it is effective for six months. Additionally, the member must provide the credit union with enough time to be able to stop the payment. This means a stop payment notice after the item has already processed is ineffective.

Legal Briefs

National Credit Union Administration (NCUA)

NCUA has issued a Notice of Funding Opportunity to announce the availability of loan awards for low-income designated credit unions through the CDRLF program.

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB)

The CFPB has announced the next meeting of the Credit Union Advisory Council. The meeting date is Thursday, March 14.

On Feb. 27, the CFPB also issued two resources related to prepaid cards. One relates to technical specifications for submission of agreements found here. The other relates to prepaid account issuers use the online submissions channel. It can be found here.

On Feb. 27, the CFPB released a report on elder financial exploitation. It can be found here.

Federal Trade Commission (FTC)

The staff of the Federal Trade Commission has provided the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau with an annual summary of its activities enforcing the Equal Credit Opportunity Act.

While the FTC enforces ECOA for non-bank entities, it shares other information related to ECOA, lending and education.

Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC)

OFAC has updated the SDN list as of Feb. 25. The last update prior to this was Feb. 20.

Questions? Contact the Compliance Hotline: 1.800.546.4465, compliance@nwcua.org.