Oregon Supreme Court Decisions

The Oregon Supreme Court consists of seven justices. It conducts a direct review of decisions in death penalty cases, Oregon Tax Court cases, certain agency proceedings, and cases involving certain labor law injunctions. The Court also has the discretion to review any decisions by the Court of Appeals, as well as questions certified by the Court of Appeals, a court of another state, or a federal court. It has original jurisdiction over issuing writs such as habeas corpus and mandamus, in addition to certain matters related to elections. The Court oversees the practice of law throughout the state, and it may conduct disciplinary proceedings related to the fitness of a judge or attorney.

Each justice on the Oregon Supreme Court serves a term of six years. Justices are chosen in non-partisan elections, so voters do not see the party affiliation of a candidate on the ballot. However, the Governor of Oregon holds the authority to appoint a justice if a vacant seat arises in the middle of a term. The interim justice must run in the next general election if they seek to remain on the court for a full term. Oregon imposes a mandatory retirement age of 75 on justices. A candidate for this position must be a U.S. citizen and a resident of Oregon for at least three years before being appointed or elected. They also must have been admitted to practice law in the Oregon Supreme Court. The Chief Justice of the Court is chosen by the other justices and holds that position for the full six years. They supervise the administrative and financial tasks related to running the state judiciary.

A justice may face removal in certain situations. These include a felony conviction, a violation of a rule of judicial conduct, incompetence to perform the duties of their position, and alcohol or drug addiction.

Browse Opinions From the Oregon Supreme Court

Recent Decisions From the Oregon Supreme Court
Batten v. State Farm Mutual Automobile Ins. Co.  
Date: September 17, 2021
Docket Number: S067887

Justia Opinion Summary: Consolidated cases presented a certified question from the United States District Court for the District of Oregon. The Oregon Supreme Court was asked to determine whether Oregon law precluded an insurer from limiting it...

Dept. of Human Services v. J. S.  
Date: September 17, 2021
Docket Number: S068044

Justia Opinion Summary: Two juvenile dependency cases raised an issue of the scope of a juvenile court’s temporary emergency jurisdiction under ORS 109.751, which was part of Oregon’s enactment of the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enfo...

Cox v. HP Inc.  
Date: August 5, 2021
Docket Number: S067138

Justia Opinion Summary: This case arose out of the explosion of a hydrogen generator at the campus of HP, Inc., which severely injured plaintiff William Cox. After Cox and his wife filed suit against HP in an Oregon court, HP brought a third-pa...

In re Long
Date: July 29, 2021
Docket Number: S067095
Sherman v. Dept. of Human Services  
Date: July 29, 2021
Docket Number: S067742

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff Janae Sherman brought child abuse claims against the Oregon Department of Human Services (defendant), alleging that it had negligently failed to protect her from abuse while she was in foster care. Defendant mo...

Estate of Evans v. Dept. of Rev.  
Date: July 29, 2021
Docket Number: S067899

Justia Opinion Summary: The estate of Helene Evans, a deceased Oregon resident, challenged the Oregon Tax Court’s determination that the Department of Revenue lawfully included in Evans’s taxable Oregon estate the principal assets of a Montana...

Oregon v. Hightower  
Date: July 22, 2021
Docket Number: S067539

Justia Opinion Summary: In the Oregon Supreme Court's first decision in this case (393 P3d 224 (2017) (Hightower I)), it determined the trial court had erred when it denied defendant’s midtrial request to dismiss counsel and represent himself...

In re Conry
Date: July 15, 2021
Docket Number: S067502
Level 3 Communications, LLC v. Dept. of Rev.  
Date: July 1, 2021
Docket Number: S067283

Justia Opinion Summary: Taxpayer Level 3 Communications, LLC (Level 3) challenged the Oregon Tax Court’s determination of the real market value of its tangible and intangible property for the 2014-15, 2015-16, and 2016-17 tax years. Level 3 arg...

Simi v. LTI Inc. - Lynden Inc.  
Date: July 1, 2021
Docket Number: S067483

Justia Opinion Summary: In a workers’ compensation case, the issue presented for the Oregon Supreme Court's review centered on the scope of an employer’s obligation under ORS 656.262(7)(c) to reopen a closed claim for processing if a “condition...

Deep Photonics Corp. v. LaChapelle  
Date: July 1, 2021
Docket Number: S067853

Justia Opinion Summary: In a shareholder derivative action, two issues were presented for the Oregon Supreme Court's review: (1) whether the breach of fiduciary duty claims brought by shareholders-plaintiffs Joseph LaChapelle and James Field on...

Allianz Global Risks v. ACE Property & Casualty Ins. Co.  
Date: June 24, 2021
Docket Number: S067017

Justia Opinion Summary: Various parties petitioned the Oregon Supreme Court for reconsideration of its decision in Allianz Global Risks v. ACE Property & Casualty Ins. Co., 483 P3d 1124 (2021). Petitioner on review Allianz Global Risks US Insur...

Strasser v. Oregon  
Date: June 24, 2021
Docket Number: S067541

Justia Opinion Summary: Petitioner Ronald Strasser, whose direct appeal of his conviction, was dismissed by the Court of Appeals as untimely filed, argued in a subsequent post-conviction proceeding that appellate counsel was constitutionally in...

Wright v. Turner  
Date: June 17, 2021
Docket Number: S067882

Justia Opinion Summary: Plaintiff was a passenger in a truck driven by Lorenz. The vehicles were traveling on an interstate when it began to hail and rain. A sedan ahead of the truck spun out of control and collided with the front of the truck....

Oregon v. Keys  
Date: June 10, 2021
Docket Number: S067691

Justia Opinion Summary: The primary question this case presented for the Oregon Supreme Court’s review was whether a defective waiver of a preliminary hearing deprived a circuit court of jurisdiction. The Court of Appeals accordingly considered...

The opinions published on Justia State Caselaw are sourced from individual state court sites. These court opinions may not be the official published versions, and you should check your local court rules before citing to them. We make no warranties or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness, or adequacy of the information contained on this site, or the information linked to on the state site.