Update: Take a look at your state labor law guide to see if there are any predictive scheduling laws in your state as of 2021.
From coast to coast, cities in the U.S.—and one state—are implementing predictive scheduling laws. These laws protect hourly employees by requiring a new kind of scheduling practice.
Legislation varies by jurisdiction. However, they all have one thing in common. You must give advance notice of schedules so employees can plan their lives around their shifts.
Let’s take a look at what changed this year, as well as laws that were already in effect before 2020.
Oregon is currently the only state with a predictive scheduling law, and it affects employers in the retail, hospitality, and food service industries that have at least 500 employees.
The current law requires employers to provide written work schedules at least seven days in advance, but as of July 1, 2020, that requirement will jump to 14 days in advance. The law also requires employers to provide a good faith estimate of hours upon hiring and a rest period of at least 10 hours between shifts (or time-and-a-half pay if the employee agrees to forgo the rest period).
Starting July 1, 2020, predictive scheduling laws under Chicago’s Fair Workweek Ordinance will take effect for businesses with at least 100 employees, nonprofit organizations with more than 250 employees, and restaurants with at least 30 locations and 250 employees.
The ordinance pertains to healthcare providers, hotels and manufacturers, building services, and retail and food service businesses. Employers within these industries must post schedules for employees who earn less than or equal to $26.00 per hour or less than $50,000 a year 10 days in advance. The notice requirement increases to 14 days on July 1, 2022.
If you change the schedule without the consent of the affected employee, you must pay the employee an extra hour of Predictability Pay (which equals the employee’s regular pay rate) for each altered shift.
Employees may also refuse to work a shift that starts less than 10 hours after a previous shift, and if they do work a shift that starts in this manner, they must receive 1.25 times their regular pay rate.
Employers with at least 250 employees and 30 locations must post schedules 10 days in advance as of April 1, 2020. By Jan. 1, 2021, the predictive scheduling law’s advance notice increases to 14 days. If you change the schedule after giving the advance notice (less than 10 days before the schedule), you must pay affected employees one hour of predictability pay.
You must also give employees a nine-hour rest period in between shifts, or pay them $40 for shifts worked within the rest period.
San Francisco, CA
Employers with at least 40 retail establishments worldwide must provide schedules two weeks in advance. They must also as provide a “good faith written estimate” of how many shifts the employee can expect in the next month.
Retail employers with at least 56 employees worldwide and fast food employers with 56 employees worldwide as well as 20 employees in Emeryville must provide a “good faith estimate” as part of their predictive scheduling laws. This means you should provide schedules at least 14 days in advance. If you don’t, you must give the employees “Predictability Pay.”
You must also pay employees time-and-a-half if you schedule them with two shifts within 11 hours of each other for every hour within that 11-hour window.
New York City
Fast food employers with at least 30 locations nationally and retail employers with at least 20 employees must follow NYC’s Fair Workweek Package. The legislation prohibits retail employers from implementing “on-call scheduling” within 72 hours of the shift. Fast food employers may not schedule shifts within 11 hours of each other. If the rule is broken, you must pay that employee $100.
Fast food employers must also provide a scheduling estimate when hiring a new employee, as well as a 14-day notice of schedules.
Retail and food service businesses with at least 500 employees worldwide must provide a good faith estimate of how many hours an employee can expect to work when they are hired. They cannot schedule shifts within 10 hours of each other, unless an employee consents to work for a time-and-a-half rate. These employers must provide schedules 14 days in advance. If they don’t, they must pay workers for at least an extra hour.
Remember this is not official legal advice. If you have any concerns, it’s best to consult an employment lawyer.
If you’re a business owner in one of these cities, it’s important to make sure you stay compliant. Using an automated solution such as Homebase’s Scheduling App will take the difficulty out of avoiding fines and lawsuits. Consider saying goodbye to spreadsheets and hello to smarter schedules and happier employees today.