Fair Chance Ordinance - Employers Citywide

 Employers Citywide

This page addresses the Fair Chance Ordinance (FCO) as it applies to all employers who are:

  • located or doing business in the City; and
  • have 20 or more employees (regardless of the employees’ locations).

If you are looking for  general information on the FCO, or specific information regarding the provisions that apply to housing providers or City contractors, please visit the main FCO page.




  • New! The 2014 Employer Annual Reporting Form is now available online. All employers covered by the Fair Chance Ordinance (or the Health Care Security Ordinance) are required to submit the 2014 Employer Annual Reporting Form by April 30, 2015. Please carefully review the Instructions before you begin. You may also want to view the Annual Reporting Form PDF Preview. 

  • New! The Board of Supervisors passed an Amendment (PDF) to the Ordinance on December 9, 2014. See the Legislative Digest for a summary.
  • The Fair Chance Ordinance took effect August 13, 2014.
  • The Office of Labor Standards Enforcement  has published Fair Chance Ordinance Frequently Asked Questions (PDF). These FAQs pertain to employment and to City contracting.
  • New! Sign up for email updates! Join the OLSE email list for employers with 20 or more employees to receive periodic updates on the FCO and applicable San Francisco labor laws.



Starting August 13, 2014, the Fair Chance Ordinance requires employers to follow strict rules regarding applicants’ and employees’ arrest and conviction record(s) and related information. The ordinance covers employees who perform work (in whole or in substantial part) in the City and County of San Francisco, whose employers are located or doing business in the City; and have 20 or more employees (regardless of the employees’ locations).

This ordinance covers any vocation, job, or work, including temporary, seasonal, part-time, contract, contingent, and commission-based work. It also covers work performed through the services of a temporary or other employment agency, and any form of vocational or educational training—with or without pay.

The ordinance specifies:

  • Which criminal arrest and conviction records are off-limits to the employer and cannot be used during any stage of the hiring process under any circumstances;
  • When an employer can ask about an individual’s criminal arrest and conviction records; and
  • The interactive process that the employer must engage in should the employer ask about the individual’s arrest and conviction records.

        FCO Poster English  

 Click Image to view or print    


The ordinance also requires covered employers to:

  • State in all job solicitations/ads that qualified applicants with arrest and conviction records will be considered for the position in accordance with this ordinance;
  • Conspicuously post the Official FCO Notice in every workplace/jobsite under the employer’s control;
  • Maintain and retain accurate records of employment, application forms, and other pertinent data for 3 years;
  • Allow the OLSE reasonable access to these records for monitoring and compliance purposes; and
  • Provide yearly compliance reports to the OLSE.
  • Employers may not take an adverse action against an applicant or employee (such as failing /refusing to hire, discharging, or not promoting the individual) for exercising their rights under the ordinance or cooperating with the OLSE.
    For more details, please refer to the resources below.





Note that the FCO has its own detailed requirements that are not identical to those laid out in the EEOC Enforcement Guidance and the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse Fact Sheet below. These resources are linked because they provide useful background information.


Contact Us


Please email fce@sfgov.org or call 415-554-5192 if you have questions about your rights and responsibilities under the Fair Chance Ordinance.