Seattle City Council approves new regulations on Independent Contractors despite concerns

Jun 24, 2021
Written by wpengine

Last week, the Seattle City Council approved new regulations regarding business relationships with independent contractors, despite concerns expressed by the City’s Office of Labor Standards and the Labor Standards Advisory Commission.

The new regulations require businesses to provide independent contractors with written disclosure of contract terms before completing the contract and to make payments (and similar written disclosures) within specified timeframes. Although these requirements sound innocuous, both OLS and LSAC voiced concerns about the lack of stakeholder engagement, the risk of unintended consequences, and the cost for OLS to implement. In particular, they expressed apprehension about the potential cost of implementation for OLS. The projected cost to OLS is $684,000 the first year and an annual cost of $623,000 after.

They also expressed concern that OLS is currently in the middle of adopting regulations governing the pay of gig workers and domestic workers. The groups urged the Council to give OLS time to complete that work before passing the independent contractor ordinance.

For more information about this ordinance, click here.