February 3, 2024

ORS 31.155 - Explanation and Summary

ORS 31.155

ORS 31.155, part of the Oregon Revised Statutes, addresses exempt actions and how certain laws do not affect substantive law. Specifically, ORS 31.150 and 31.152, which relate to special motions to strike, do not apply to actions initiated by the Attorney General, district attorneys, county counsels, or city attorneys acting in their official capacities.

ORS 31.155

Additionally, ORS 31.150 and 31.152 establish a procedure for seeking the dismissal of claims as described in ORS 31.150(2), but they do not alter the substantive law governing those claims. This provision ensures that while certain procedural rules for dismissing claims are in place, they do not change the fundamental legal principles underlying those claims​

What does that mean?

ORS 31.155 essentially means that certain legal actions brought by public officials like the Attorney General or district attorneys are exempt from the rules established in ORS 31.150 and 31.152. These rules typically relate to "special motions to strike," a legal procedure often used to dismiss cases at an early stage, usually in the context of free speech issues.

However, ORS 31.155 clarifies that when these public officials, acting in their official capacity, bring a legal action, this special motion to strike cannot be used against them. This is significant because it maintains the ability of these officials to pursue legal actions without the immediate threat of dismissal under these specific rules.

Furthermore, the statute also emphasizes that while ORS 31.150 and 31.152 establish a process for the dismissal of certain claims, they do not change the underlying legal principles or substantive law of those claims. This means that even though there is a procedural mechanism for dismissing claims early, the fundamental legal rights, duties, and principles that govern these claims remain unchanged.

In simpler terms, ORS 31.155 ensures that legal actions by certain public officials are not immediately dismissible under specific procedural rules, and it reinforces that these rules do not alter the essential legal nature of the claims involved.

ORS 31.155 Text

31.155 Exempt actions; substantive law not affected. (1) ORS 31.150 and 31.152 do not apply to an action brought by the Attorney General, a district attorney, a county counsel or a city attorney acting in an official capacity.

(2) ORS 31.150 and 31.152 create a procedure for seeking dismissal of claims described in ORS 31.150 (2) and do not affect the substantive law governing those claims. [Formerly 30.146]

ORS 31.155


This post is part of our series of posts on ORS chapter 31 in general. We have more information available about ORS chapter 31 in addition to detailed dives into other sections of the chapter.

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