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Washington Joins Growing List of States with Laws Protecting Biometric Information

Not to be outdone by the recent attention to biometric information in Illinois, and the Prairie State’s Biometric Information Privacy Act (BIPA), Washington enacted a biometric data protection statute of its own, HB 1493, which became effective July 23, 2017.

Washington Enacts Paid Family and Medical Leave Law

All Washington employers must provide paid family and medical leave under a bill signed by Governor Jay Inslee on July 5, 2017.

Washington State Approves Paid Family and Medical Leave: What Employers Need to Know

With Governor Inslee’s signature on July 5, 2017, Washington State joined just a handful of states mandating paid family and medical leave. Washington’s leave is funded by both employers and employees, and employees will be eligible to receive benefits beginning in 2020. The new paid leave program provides benefits of up to 90 percent of the employee’s income and matches Washington, D.C., in providing the highest percentage of income benefit of any state or district in the United States.

Seattle Minimum Wage Ordinance Backfired, New Research Finds

When Seattle raised its minimum wage from $9.47 to $11.00 in 2015, the increase had little effect on employment.

Gig Economy Portable Benefits Bill Introduced In Washington State

We’ve written before about a proposal in New York that would permit gig companies to pay into a benefit fund for workers allowing them freedom to develop portable benefits; now, Washington state is considering a similar concept. House Bill 2109, introduced this legislative session, would take a giant leap by creating portable, prorated, universal benefits for workers in the sharing economy.

Seattle Proposes Revisions to Minimum Wage Rules

The Seattle Office of Labor Standards (OLS) has proposed revisions to the city's minimum wage rules.

New Minimum Wage and Paid Sick Leave Laws for Washington Employers

November 2016 was a dynamic month for laws relating to Washington State workers. At the state level, Washington voters approved Initiative Measure No. 1433 (“the Law”), which provides incremental increases of the state minimum wage beginning January 1, 2017 and paid sick leave beginning January 1, 2018. Washington was one of two states—the other being Arizona—to approve ballot measures providing for paid sick leave during the November general election. Washington and Arizona join five other states—California, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Oregon and Vermont and numerous other localities including the Washington cities of Seattle, Tacoma and Spokane— who already require employers to provide employees paid sick leave. Locally, Seattle voters also approved Initiative 124, which imposes new and significant health and safety, healthcare, and hiring requirements on the City’s hotel industry.1

Washington’s New Minimum Wage and Paid Sick Leave Become Law With Fast-Approaching Effective Dates

With all of the votes counted, Initiative 1433, which will raise the minimum wage and require paid sick leave throughout Washington, has passed by a fairly wide margin. The first substantial increase in the minimum wage begins on January 1, 2017, while the paid sick leave requirement goes into effect on January 1, 2018. Here are the key details about both the minimum wage increase and the paid sick leave requirements.

Seattle Retail and Food Services Employers Beware: New City Ordinance Restricts Scheduling Practices

The Seattle City Council unanimously passed a bill on September 19, 2016, enacting secure scheduling regulations for large employers in the retail and fast food businesses. Seattle is the second city, after San Francisco, to adopt such regulations. Mayor Ed Murray announced he plans to sign the ordinance within the next two weeks. The Seattle Secure Scheduling Ordinance will take effect on July 1, 2017.

Seattle Passes Predictable Scheduling Ordinance

The City of Seattle has passed a bill requiring certain large employers operating within Seattle city limits to give their hourly workers advance notice of their schedules and to pay workers extra for being required to work on call. Mayor Ed Murray announced he plans to sign the Secure Scheduling Ordinance. The bill will go into effect on July 1, 2017.