On April 4, 2013, Governor Kitzhaber signed a new law requiring Oregon employers to provide employees who are veterans with time off on Veterans Day.
Under the law, an eligible employee who is scheduled to work on Veterans Day is entitled to take the day off upon request. Eligible employees have served active duty in the Armed Forces for at least six months. If the employee’s service was in the reserves or National Guard it does not qualify the employee as a veteran, unless they were deployed or served active duty for six months.
Eligible employees are required to ask for Veterans Day off with at least 21 days advanced notice. Employers must notify the employee 14 days before Veterans Day if they are allowed the day off. Before approving the request you may require the employee to provide documentation establishing that they are an eligible veteran. If you are unable to determine if the employee is eligible you may contact the Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs. You are required to notify the employee that the time of has or has not been granted and if it will be paid. Paying for the time off is at the discretion of the employer.
As an employer you are allowed to deny the request for time off if you can prove that granting the time off would cause an undue hardship to the company. If those circumstances are met, you must then allow the employee a single day off at a later date to honor the holiday. This day off is outside all regular days the employee would be entitled.
If you have any questions regarding this new legislation, we encourage you to contact our office.