Secure Scheduling Ordinance

Final Administrative Rules: City of Seattle Secure Scheduling Ordinance

The Seattle Office of Labor Standards (OLS) announces the final Administrative Rules for Seattle's Secure Scheduling Ordinance (SMC 14.22). The ordinance goes into effect on July 1, 2017.

The final Administrative Rules clarify numerous issues raised by stakeholders about the Secure Scheduling Ordinance.

For more information about Secure Scheduling:

  1. Call 206-684-4500.
  2. Help for employers: For free individual assistance with the Secure Scheduling ordinance or any other City of Seattle labor standards law, call 206-684-4500 or email
    Our hours: Monday to Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  3. Help for workers: To ask a question or file a complaint, call 206-684-4500, visit the Office of Labor Standards in downtown Seattle at 810 Third Ave., Suite 350, or click here to fill out a web form.
  4. To schedule training: Contact Karina Bull at 206-684-4536 or

The Seattle Secure Scheduling Ordinance applies to:

  • Retail and food services establishments with 500+ employees worldwide;
  • Full service restaurants with 500+ employees and 40+ full-service restaurant locations worldwide.

The law will take effect July 1, 2017.

Key provisions of the ordinance:

  • Good Faith Estimate: Upon hire, employers must provide a good faith estimate of the median hours an employee can expect to work, including on-call shifts.
  • Right to Request: Employees may request schedule preferences to balance their other commitments, like caring for a family member, working another job and attending school. Employers must engage in an interactive process with employees to discuss these requests, and must grant a request related to a major life event unless there is a bona fide business reason.
  • Advance Notice: Employers must post employees' work schedules 14 days in advance.
    • Additional hours: If an employer adds hours to the employee's schedule after it is posted, the employer must pay the employee for one additional hour of "predictability pay."
    • Subtracted hours: If an employee is scheduled for a shift and then sent home early, the employer must pay the employee for half of the hours not worked.
    • On-Call Protections: Employees receive half-time pay for any shift they are "on-call" and do not get called into work.
    • Exceptions to predictability pay:
      • When an employee requests changes to a schedule (e.g. when an employee requests to leave work early to attend a concert.)
      • When an employee finds replacement coverage for hours through an employee-to-employee shift swap.
      • When an employer provides notice of additional hours through mass communication and an employee volunteers to cover hours.
      • When an employer conducts an in-person group conversation with employees currently on shift to cover new hours to address customer needs and an employee consents to take the hours.
  • Right to Rest: If the gap between a closing and opening shift (i.e. clopening) is less than 10 hours, the employer must pay the employee time-and-a-half for the difference.
  • Access to Hours: Employers must offer additional hours of work to qualified existing employees before hiring external employees.
  • Record-Keeping Requirements: Employers must keep records for three years to show compliance.
  • Protection from Retaliation: Employees have the right to decline any hours not on the originally posted schedule.
  • Workplace Poster: Employers must display the City of Seattle's workplace poster in a conspicuous and accessible place at the worksite, in English and the employees' primary language(s). The Office of Labor Standards will create the poster and provide translations.


Secure Scheduling - Seattle Municipal Code  14.22

Secure Scheduling Ordinance - Office of the City Clerk Legislation Details

Press release: Mayor Murray, Council members applaud unanimous adoption of secure scheduling legislation

Secure Scheduling Infographic

Secure Scheduling Legislation Chart - Effective July 1, 2017

Email or call OLS Senior Policy Analyst Karina Bull at 206-684-4536.