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Predictive Work Schedule Laws: A City-By-City Guide
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Workforce Management

Predictive Work Schedule Laws: A City-By-City Guide

One Minute Takeaway:

  • Predictive work schedule laws require employers to give employees sufficient notice of schedule changes.
  • Regulations vary between different states and cities.
  • More and more states are adopting these laws, so stay informed of any changes.

What are Predictive Scheduling Laws?

Predictive scheduling laws—also known as ‘Fair workweek’ laws—promote fairer scheduling practices, require that companies give employees sufficient notice of work schedules and enforce penalties for late schedule changes.

Fair workweek laws typically require employers to:

  • Give good faith estimations of likely hours on hiring
  • Provide minimum break times between shifts
  • Avoid “clopening” shifts (where employees work closing and then opening shifts)
  • Offer right of first refusal for new shifts to current employees before new hires
  • Avoid late schedule changes (or pay extra) except due to “acts of god” (e.g., a hurricane)
  • Pay higher rates (or “Predictability pay”) for last-minute schedule changes
  • Keep more detailed scheduling records

The Rise of ‘Fair Workweek’ Regulations

On-call and just-in-time scheduling means that many Americans’ work schedules are unpredictable from month to month, week to week or even day to day. Nationwide, more than 8 million retail and food service workers have unpredictable schedules, and a whopping 42% have no say in scheduling at all (CNBC). For workers, this is a financial problem. For HR, it’s a retention problem.

While Oregon is the only state to enforce state-wide work schedule laws, several other states have local ordinances, applying to major cities like New York City, Los Angeles, and Chicago. Nationwide, cities continue to strengthen their fair workweek laws. While a few states have banned these laws, others may soon expand them. No matter where you do business, it’s a good idea to prepare for predictive scheduling laws well in advance. Getting caught off-guard could be a compliance nightmare, especially for businesses that operate in multiple jurisdictions.

Where Do Predictive Schedule Laws Apply?


The following places have passed predictive work schedule laws:


Where?Who Does it Apply To?Employees are guaranteed…*
Berkeley, CA-The city government
-Employers in healthcare, hotel, manufacturing, retail, warehouse or building services with 56 or more employees globally
-Restaurant industry emplyers with 10+ employees in the city and 100+ employees globally
-Retail or restaurant franchisees with 10+ employees in the city and associated with franchises that employ 100+ employees globally
-Non-profit corporations with 100+ employees globally
– A written “good faith estimate” of their schedule with at least 2 weeks notice
– Written notice of changes within 24 hours
– The right to decline “clopening” work hours
– Predictability pay at 1.5x their regular rate
Emeryville, CA– Retail employers with 56+ employees globally
– Fast food companies with 20+ local employees or 56+ global employees
– A “good faith estimate” of their schedule at least 14 days in advance, or predictability pay
-Pay at 1.5x their regular rate for “clopening” shifts
San Francisco, CA– Chain stores with 40+ stores worldwide, including restaurants, bars, liquor stores, banks, and other sales providers– Written “good faith schedule estimates” upon hiring
– Other rights regulated by Formula Retail Employees Rights Ordinances (FRERO)
Los Angeles, CA– Retail businesses with 300+ employees globally
These laws only cover employees who perform at least 2 hours of work in Los Angeles in a workweek.

– Electronic, printed, or posted schedules, 14 calendar days in advance.
– A good-faith estimate of the worker’s ongoing schedule upon hiring and within 10 days of an employee’s request
– 10 hours of rest between shifts, unless the employee gives written consent to a shorter rest period
– 1.5x their regular pay rate for shifts that fall within the 10-hour window
San Jose, CaliforniaEmployers of 36 or more employees.– An employer must offer additional work hours to existing employees before hiring new employees or subcontractors (including temporary workers).
– An employer is not required to offer additional hours to existing employees if the employer would be required to pay the employee at a premium rate.
– There is a possible exemption when complying with this requirement if it would create a hardship for the employer.
– 1 additional hour of pay when the employer changes the schedule within 14 days of the shift
– 0.5x their regular rate of pay for scheduling changes that result in lost work time

Other Cities and States

Where?Who Does it Apply To?Employees are guaranteed…*
Chicago, IL– Businesses with 100+ employees
– Not-for-profit organizations with over 250 employees
– Restaurants with 30+ locations and 250+ global employees
These laws only cover employees who earn ≤$26/hr, or ≤$50k annually.
– 14 day notice of their schedule
– Right to decline work with less than a 10 hour break between shifts
– Predictability pay at 1.25x their regular rate for late schedule changes
Evanston, IL– Hospitality, retail, manufacturing, warehouse and building services that employ 100+ employees
– Restaurants with at least 30 locations and 200+ employees globally
– Franchisees under one of the above industries with <100 employees that are associated with a franchisor that has >30 global locations
– A good faith estimate of regular hours within the first 90 days of work, including weekly hours and on-call shifts
– Written notice of work hours at least 14 days before the first day of a new schedule
– An extra hour of pay when the schedule changes within that 14-day window, but with at least 24 hours of notice
– Up to 4 hours of extra pay if the schedule changes within 24 hours of their shift
– The right to decline scheduled “clopening” hours
– 1.5x their regular rate of pay if they consent to “clopening” shift hours
Oregon (statewide)Retail, hospitality and food service companies with 500+ employees worldwide– Good faith estimate of median scheduled hours on hiring
– 14 day notice of schedules
– Right to 10 hours of rest between shifts
– 1.5x their regular rate of pay if they consent to work a “clopening” shift
New York, NYFast food companies with 30+ US locations and retail companies with 20+ sellersFast food
– Regular schedules (unchanging from week to week)
–14-day notice of schedules
– Immediately notification of cancelled shifts
– Predictability pay for late changes or “clopening” shifts
– The right to refuse “clopening” shifts
– “Just Cause” protection against reductions in hours of <15%
– The right of first refusal when more shifts become available, before new employees are hired

– 72 hour notice of schedules
– Right to decline last minute shifts
– No on-call shifts
– No last-minute cancellations
Philadelphia, PARetail, hospitality and food service companies with 250+ employees and 30+ locations worldwide– Right of first refusal on new shifts
– Good faith schedule estimate on hiring
– Right to request changes
– Right to decline extra shifts
– 10 day notice of schedules
– ‘Predictability pay’ for late changes
and “clopening” shifts they agree to work
Seattle, WARetail and quick service restaurants with 500+ employees worldwide and full service restaurant with 40+ locations and 40+ employees worldwide– Good faith schedule estimates on hiring
– Right of first refusal on new shifts
– Right to state schedules preferences
–14 day notice of schedules
– Right of refusal and extra pay for “clopening” shifts
– “Predictability pay” for late schedule changes

The following states have prohibited local governments passing predictive work schedule laws:

  • Iowa
  • Arkansas
  • Tennessee
  • Georgia

Predictive Work Schedule Laws: How to Stay Compliant

Even if you aren’t affected by existing Fair Workweek laws, you might be soon. There’s an ongoing campaign for more predictive work schedule laws at a federal level. Businesses of all sizes should be ready to inform employees of schedules in advance, and avoid schedules with minimal breaks between shifts.

Implementing these practices might be hard at first – especially if you’re not facing compliance issues yet. But in the long run, it’s better to be prepared. You can protect your business from future compliance issues by creating more efficient schedules all around. Or at a bare minimum, digitize your records as soon as possible.


Better Scheduling Helps Everyone

Compliance isn’t the only issue here. Scheduling instability also increases employees’ psychological distress (American Sociological Review). Better scheduling helps: the predictive work schedule law in Emeryville, in effect since 2017, has been shown to improve sleep quality and reduce stress levels for covered employees with young children (Duke University).

And that’s not all: stable scheduling can also improve sales and productivity (University of Chicago). These practices promote work/life balance, increase job satisfaction, and drive employee retention.

Paycor Can Help

Paycor’s software empowers HR leaders to track, update, and communicate employee schedules. Our compliance tools help businesses stay up to date on the latest regulations, avoiding fines and legal issues.

Watch our Webinar: Are You Scheduling Like a Pro, to learn how Paycor Scheduling helps medium and small businesses increase productivity and track labor costs while staying compliant.