Working Interview in Oregon
Oregon companies who require applicants to work during job interviews are generally required to pay the applicant/employee for all time the applicant/employee works. If the Oregon employer does not pay wages for the time the applicant/employee works in the working interview, the applicant/employee has a potential wage claim. Schuck Law files wage claims to help you recover not just the wages, but also penalty wages due because the employer failed to pay for time worked during the employer’s working interview. A wage claim is a common reference to a lawsuit or proceeding used to force an employer to pay wages along with other penalties the law provides when your employer fails to pay wages Oregon law requires.
Why do Employers Use “Working Interviews”
Of course every employer is different, but may tell you that a working interview is a great opportunity for you because you can more easily prove your worth and that you should be the one they hire. Through the “working interview”, you can prove your job skills and work ethic. While this is all true about working interviews, it does not address how Oregon law deals with working interviews. Oregon law does not directly address whether an employer can require an employee to work during the interview process. Instead, Oregon law defines a different term. Oregon law defines “work time” to determine what time an employee gives to the employer must be paid. Work time includes all time the employee is required to work, allowed to work, and time that the employer authorizes the employee to be on location for work. Hours Worked Page Thus, the question is whether an employee is required or allowed to work during the working interview. If so, then likely the employee is due wages for the time they work during the working interview. Further, it means that lawyers, like those at Schuck Law, can file wage claims for employees who were required to work during working interviews and were not paid wages for the time spent in the working interview.
Unpaid Working Interviews Violate Oregon’s Minimum Wage Laws
As long as the employer pays all wages due for the working interview, all is fine. But when the working interview is unpaid, problems arise. One problem could be the application of Oregon’s minimum wage laws to the working interview. The minimum wage laws generally require employers to pay the employee a minimum wage for all hours worked. Oregon minimum wage law is different than federal minimum wage law discussed below. Arguably, Oregon’s minimum wage law requires each hour worked to be treated separately, meaning that a minimum wage claim could be brought by a lawyer even though the pay period’s hours, when averaged, exceed Oregon’s minimum wage. Nothing distinguishes a working interview from other hours worked. Oregon’s minimum wage rate fluctuates by year and is set by the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries. BOLI Poster. It is adjusted, usually upwards, every year in July. If an employer fails to pay an employee minimum wages for all hours worked, including those worked during a working interview, the attorneys at Schuck Law may be able to win up to 30 days of wages in addition to the unpaid minimum wages for the employee. Minimum Wage Page.
Oregon Late Payment of Final Wages Claim for Unpaid Working Interviews
A working interview is generally considered employment. Because the applicant/employee is likely employed, they are due wages. When the employment ends, the applicant/employee is due all those wages from the working interview. For the applicant/employee who does not get hired, the end of employment likely comes after the working interview is completed. Oregon wage and hour law sets time deadlines for payment of wages when the employment relationship ends, including wages earned in a working interview. An employer must pay all wages due to the employee within these time lines. For instance, where the employer terminates (fires) the employee, all wages are due within one business day under Oregon’s wage and hour laws. While no court has determined whether the failure to hire after a working interview is classified as a layoff or fire, the most likely timeline under Oregon wage law requires the employer to pay all wages for the working interview within one business day. If an employer/boss willfully fails to timely pay all final wages, the lawyers at Schuck Law can likely recover up to 30 days of penalty wages in addition to the unpaid working interview wages by having our Oregon wage claim attorneys file a wage claim lawsuit in Oregon…Late Pay Page
Alternatively, if the applicant/employee is hired, and then later the employment relationship ends, wages for the unpaid working interview remain unpaid. In this case, the attorneys at Schuck Law could file the wage claim after the employment relationship ends. Thus, because the working interview wages remain unpaid, the wage claim filed by the lawyers at Schuck Law would be for the unpaid working interview wages plus penalty wages under Oregon law. Thus, it would not matter how the employment relationship ended, our attorneys would likely be able to recover penalty wages for you.
Application of the FLSA to Working Interviews
Oregon employees who perform working interviews may also be covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act, or FLSA for short. The FLSA is federal wage and hour law that governs payment of the minimum wage and payments for overtime. Like Oregon law, federal law requires employees to be paid minimum wages. Where an employer does not pay minimum wages, our lawyers may also be able to recover double the wages for the working interview by filing a wage claim under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). In addition, our attorneys may be able to hold your actual boss separately liable, not just the company, if he/she causes the employer to fail to pay minimum wages or overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA). Our attorneys can use this to get the attention of specific decision makers within the employer. While historically the federal minimum wage rate has been lower than Oregon’s minimum wage rate, there are times when pursing the federal minimum wage will be a better choice for the employee…Minimum Wage Page Our lawyers are trained and can help guide employees to make the correct decision on what type of wage claim should be brought.
Oregon Overtime Wage Claim & Working Interviews
Oregon wage and hour laws also generally require that overtime wages be paid by an employer/boss to non-exempt employees. The issue our lawyers will help prove is that time spent in working interviews is work time under Oregon law. Hours Worked Page Once our lawyers prove that the working interview must be counted as work time, it must be included in the calculation to determine whether overtime is due. Overtime wages are equal to 1 1/2 times the employee’s regular hourly rate (called overtime rate) and must be paid whenever the employee works more than 40 hours in a single work week. Likely places that Oregon employers fail to pay overtime because of working interviews is by failing to count the unpaid working interview as work time. For instance, applicant/employee begins their working interview on Sunday. Their interview lasts Sunday and Monday where they work 16 hours. Tuesday, the employer hires the employee and begins what the employer calls employment. They work 32 more hours and so do not pay any overtime wages. However, when the working interview is considered, the employee is due 8 hours of overtime wages. Overtime Page Oregon wage and hour laws may also may require certain employees who work in factories to be paid overtime wages when they work more than 10 hours in a day. So a four hour working interview and then 8 hour of work thereafter, may result in two hours of overtime wages due. In addition to recovering the unpaid overtime wages, the lawyers at Schuck Law could recover up to 30 days of wages as a civil overtime penalty for the employee. In addition to the unpaid overtime wages and the overtime civil penalty, our attorneys may be able to recover penalty wages for employees whose employment has ended. This is because Oregon law requires prompt payment of all wages due employees at the end of employment. This is true whether the employee quits, is fired, or is laid off. Further, by having our Oregon overtime wage claim attorneys file an overtime wage claim lawsuit, the employee could require the employer to pay their attorney fees and costs.
Oregon Pre-Employment Training Time and Pre-Employment Training Wage Wage Claim
Oregon wage and hour law determines whether attendence to training is considered work time or whether training is compesible wages. OAR 839-020-0044 This is slightly different than the working interview. Here the employer is trying to make the employee work to become trained to work for them. This unpaid pre-employment training is very common in the truck driving and bus driving industries. The pre-employment training may be short and take just a day, or the pre-employment training may take weeks. Likely, this time must be compensated at no less than minimum wage. Minimum Wage Page. In addition to recovering the unpaid minimum wages, an employee could recover up to 30 days of wages as a civil penalty by having our Oregon wage claim attorneys file a minimum wage claim lawsuit…Pre-Employment Page
FAQ to our wage and hour lawyers
1. Can employers require working interviews? Likely yes. However, the employee is likely due wages for the time he/she works in the working interview. Where it is unpaid, our lawyers (attorneys) can help you recover your wages.
2. How do you know if your interview is a working interview due wages? It depends upon the facts. If you are working along side other employees, performing the duties you would perform if you were hired, then likely it is a working interview. The closer it is to just being a normal employee, the more likely our lawyers will be able to recover wages for the time you worked.
3. What if part of the interview was working and part was not? The more the facts are jumbled, the harder the case is for our lawyers to prosecute. However, the more separated these aspects are, the easier it is for our attorneys. For instance, if the first half hour was sitting in an office going over your resume, this may not be compensable. However, if you then move to the restaurant and begin waiting on tables so the employer can see how well you do, then you are now in a working interview. It will depend upon the fact finder (judge, jury, or arbitrator) to determine whether to include the first half hour in the office, but likely the remainder of the time will be a working interview and compensable wages. As the facts can and do vary by person/job, it is best to call our lawyers and describe in detail what happened so that the attorney can give your their opinion on your case.
4. Can employers pay a different rate for working interviews? Likely yes. Employers are required to pay minimum wage for work. As discussed above, work time should include working interviews. However, an employer who would otherwise pay $30 per hour, could pay minimum wage for the working interview. This assumes the employer told you before the work was done. If the promise was for $30 per hour, then likely our lawyers could prosecute for the full wage due. Paying less could also cause problems with any overtime wages due.
5. Should I be paid if I have to work during an interview? Likely yes. Employers have to pay wages for all work time, including the time that employees work during interviews. Some employers try and get away with not paying wages for working interviews, but that could entitle the employee to several thousand in penalties.
6. What is the difference between a working interview and a standard interview? The main difference is what is being required of the employee. During a working interview, the employee/applicant is performing the same type of work that they would perform if they get the job. For instance, a waitress would take drink/food orders, or deliver meals to tables, or bus tables. Compare this to a standard interview where the employee sits in the office and is asked questions about their resume, job experience, and personal references. Working interviews mean simply that the employee trying to get a job performs duties of that job in the interview process.
Our Oregon wage claim attorneys (lawyers) prosecute wage claims throughout Oregon, including but not limited to, Portland, Astoria, Beaverton, Portland, Bend, Clackamas, Coos Bay, Grants Pass, Gresham, Hillsboro, Portland, Hood River, Klamath Falls, Lake Oswego, Oregon City, Portland, Madras, McMinnville, Medford, Milwaukie, Portland, Newberg, Oregon City, Portland, Sandy, St. Helens, Portland, Tillamook, and West Linn.
Google By David Schuck