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Permit FAQ

Where are you located?
How do I get a permit application?
Can I pay with my credit card over the phone?
What happens after I have submitted the application and the application/permit fee?
How do I schedule an inspection?
What is a validation number?
How can I obtain a validation number?
My temporary permit has expired.  Can I renew it or get an extension?
My annual permit has expired.  How can I renew it?
Why is there a late fee?
How is the late fee determined?
We've moved.  Can you change the address on my permit?
I sold my business.  Can you send invoices to the new owner?
I just took over a business that has Seattle Fire Department permits.  What do I need to do?
How do I cancel a permit that I no longer need?
How do I determine if there is an oil tank on my property, and whether or not it has been decommissioned?
Where can I find information on the My Permit Required Confined Space Entry Program?
Can I request a permit fee refund?

Q Where are you located?
A

The Fire Marshal’s Office is located at 220 3rd Avenue South (Seattle Fire Department’s Fire Prevention Building), on the corner of Third Avenue South and South Main Street, in Pioneer Square.
 

Q

How do I get a permit application?

A

You may obtain a permit application in person by visiting us at the Fire Marshal’s Office located at 220 3rd Avenue South in Pioneer Square, or you can download an application directly from this Web site. You can also call the Fire Marshal’s Office at 206-386-1450 and request that an application be mailed, faxed or emailed to you. The Fire Marshal’s Office permit counter is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 A.M. – 5:00 P.M.

 

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Q

Can I pay with my credit card over the phone?

A

Yes. Payment can be made over the phone using a Visa or MasterCard during regular business hours by calling 206-386-1450 or in person at the permit counter in the Fire Marshal's Office.
 

Q

What happens after I have submitted the application and the application/permit fee?

A

When the Permit Section receives an application with payment, the application and payment information are entered into our permit database and a receipt is promptly printed and mailed to the customer. The applicant is requested to post the receipt at the jobsite, until an inspection has been conducted and the permit has been approved and issued. The application is then forwarded, either to your local fire station to conduct the inspection, or to an inspector in the Fire Marshal’s Office. You can check the status of an application directly from this website or you can contact the Permit Section staff in the Fire Marshal’s Office at 206-386-1450 to inquire about the status of an application or permit.
 

Q

How do I schedule an inspection?

A

Most temporary permits and some annual permits require that the permit applicant call to schedule an inspection at least 24 hours prior to the requested inspection time. To schedule an inspection, call the Fire Marshal's Office at (206) 386-1450 Monday through Friday during regular business hours 8:00 A.M. - 5:00 P.M.

Activities and operations that require temporary permits are not allowed to be conducted prior to inspection, approval and issuance of the permit by a Seattle Fire Department inspector.
 

 

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Q

What is a validation number?

A

If you are the holder of a valid annual permit for roofing operations, land-based hot work or marine vessel refueling you are required to obtain a validation number prior to conducting that operation at each jobsite (or vessel) throughout the City. Validation numbers are issued for jobs that will not last longer than 20 days at any one location. If the job is substantial enough to last longer than 20 days, or you are conducting a roofing operation within the boundaries of the downtown Fire District, a validation number will not be issued and you will need to obtain a temporary permit for the site. The issuance of validation numbers allows the Fire Department to conduct random and unannounced inspections of these hazardous operations to verify compliance with permit conditions.
 

Q

How can I obtain a validation number?

A

Validation numbers may be obtained over the phone by contacting the Fire Marshal’s Office at 206-386-1450 weekdays from 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M.  When you call you should have ready and available specific information about the job and jobsite for which the validation number is being requested and information about your annual permit.

Failure to obtain a required validation number may result in a stop work order of not less than 24 hours and legal action may be initiated.

Q

My temporary permit has expired.  Can I renew it or get an extension?

A

Temporary permits cannot be renewed after the expiration date noted on the permit. A new temporary permit and inspection must be obtained. However extensions are occasionally granted. To request an extension, you must contact the Fire Marshal’s Office at 206-386-1450 between 8:00 A.M. – 5:00 P.M. and speak directly with the Lieutenant in the Special Hazards Unit.
 

Q

My annual permit has expired.  How can I renew it?

A

We go to great lengths to ensure that annual permits that are still needed at a facility are not allowed to expire. Permit holders are notified in writing and invoiced for the renewal at least 30 days prior to the permit expiration date. If payment for the permit renewal is not received within 30 days after the expiration date a second notice/invoice is forwarded to the permit holder. The permit holder is given up to 90 days past the permit expiration date to renew the permit and 180 days after the expiration date to reinstate it.  Late fees apply.

If your annual permit has expired and reinstatement is no longer possible because the permit expiration date is more than 180 days ago, a new application must be submitted and the application and inspection process initiated again. Late fees will, however, still apply.
 

 

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Q

Why is there a late fee?

A

Late fees are intended to discourage permit holders from allowing their permits to expire. The late fee is charged whenever payment is received more than 30 days after the expiration date of the permit. The permit will be canceled if the amount due with late fee is not received in full within 90 days of the permit expiration date.

If your annual permit has expired and reinstatement is no longer possible because the permit expiration date is more than 180 days ago, a new application must be submitted and the application and inspection process initiated again.  Late fees will, however, still apply.

Conducting regulated operations without a valid permit is a violation of the Seattle Fire Code, and an existing permit is not valid unless the associated permit fee is paid in full.

Q

How is the late fee determined?

A

Late fees are included as part of the Fire Department permit fee ordinance and are determined as follows:

For flat fee permits: Late Fee = 1.25 x the Renewal Fee
To renew after cancellation = 1.5 x Permit Fee

For worksheet fee permits (applicable to special hazards permits only): Late Fee = 1.75 x the Renewal Fee
To renew after cancellation = 1.25 x the current Fee for an Original Permit


 

 

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Q

We've moved.  Can you change the address on my permit?

A

No.  Permits are not transferable to any operation address other than the one for which they were issued.
 

Q

I've sold my business.  Can you send invoices to the new owner?

A

No. Your permits are not transferable to the new owner of the business and therefore permit renewal invoices cannot be sent to the new owner.  As soon as you notify the Permit Section staff in the Fire Marshal’s Office at 206-386-1450 that you have sold your business, we will cancel all existing permits immediately and send applications for new permits to the new owner.


Q

I just took over a business that has Seattle Fire Department permits.  What do I need to do?

A

If you are the new owner of an existing business that has Fire Department permits, notify the Permit Section of the Fire Marshal’s Office at 206-386-1450, as soon as possible. Because permits are not transferable when there is new ownership of a business, we must cancel all existing permits issued to the previous owner, and forward to you applications for new permits.
 

 

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Q

How do I cancel a permit that I no longer need?

A

If you have determined that an existing permit is no longer required and you wish to cancel the permit, please notify the Permit Section of the Fire Marshal’s Office at 206-386-1450 directly and let them know. If we verify that the activity or operation does not require a permit we will take steps to immediately cancel the permit.
 

Q

How do I determine if there is an oil tank on my property, and whether or not it has been decommissioned?

A

The Fire Department does not have records of the location of underground heating oil tanks, because a Fire Department permit is not required to install underground heating oil tanks.  However, the Permit Section staff in the Fire Marshal’s Office, at 206-386-1450, can check for any record of the removal or decommissioning of an oil tank at your address conducted under permit after 1997 for residential properties and after 1984 for commercial properties. Before those years a Seattle Fire Department permit was not required to remove or decommission an underground tank.
 

Q

Where can I find information on the My Permit Required Confined Space Entry Program?

A

The My Permit Required Confined Space Entry Program applies to any individual, group of individuals, contractor or employer that makes entry into permit required confined spaces inside the City of Seattle.  The Seattle Fire Department provides the following information for this program:

Confined Space User Info    MS Word

Confined Space User Info    PDF

 

Q

Can I request a permit fee refund?

A

Yes, please see the policies governing permit fee refunds.  The intent of the policies is to ensure that all customers are treated fairly and consistently.  If you would like to request a refund, please contact your Fire Marshal's Office Inspector or call the Fire Marshal's Office mainline at (206) 386-1450.

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Last Modified:   May 19, 2014

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