App-Based Worker Deactivation Rights Ordinance

Ordinance SMC 8.40

In August 2023, City Council passed and the Mayor signed the App-Based Worker Deactivation Rights Ordinance, SMC 8.40.

This law is effective on January 1, 2025.

The ordinance covers certain app-based workers (sometimes referred to as gig workers) and provides several deactivation-related rights and protections for covered workers. A deactivation is a permanent or temporary blocking of a worker's ability to perform services for a network company.

Key rights and obligations include:

  • The ordinance makes certain types of deactivations unlawful.
  • A network company must provide app-based workers with its deactivation policies, which must describe what may lead to deactivation and must be reasonably related to the network company’s safe and efficient operations.
  • A network company must follow certain procedural steps before most deactivations.
  • Network companies must establish a process for app-based workers to challenge their deactivation with the company.
  • A network company must provide notice to an app-based worker before most deactivations and provide the worker with access to records substantiating the deactivation.

Enforcement: Between January 1, 2025 and May 31, 2027, the Office of Labor Standards (OLS) has enforcement authority over limited procedural requirements outlined in this law. During this time, OLS will investigate issues such as whether a network company provided notice, access to records, and whether they followed the required steps before and after deactivating an app-based worker. During this period, OLS is not permitted to investigate whether a network company deactivated a worker for a permissible reason.

Starting June 1, 2027, OLS may commence investigations of whether a network company deactivated a worker for a permissible reason.

In the coming months, OLS will release additional explanatory guidance on this ordinance as well as begin formal rulemaking to further clarify its provisions. If you wish to be included in a list of stakeholders to receive further information on rulemaking, please email

If you have questions about the law, contact us via our online inquiry form or via phone at (206) 256-5297

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The Office of Labor Standards enforces Seattle’s labor standards ordinances to protect workers and educate employers on their responsibilities.