First, let me say that you, as the client, shouldn’t have to worry about this – as long as your production company knows the rules and how to navigate them. GoodSide manages permitting and insurance concerns for our clients
In many cases, the practical answer is no. If you’re on private property, not blocking traffic, taking up inordinate amounts of parking or requiring city services, you don’t.
YOU WILL NEED A PERMIT WHILE FILMING ON PUBLIC CITY OF SEATTLE PROPERTY IF:
Traffic will be interrupted on City streets.
Pedestrian traffic on sidewalks will be interrupted.
A tri-pod or dolly is used on sidewalks or streets.
Wires or cables run across or over sidewalks.
A generator is used on public property.
Public parking will be impacted.
You are filming in a city park.
A weapon, authentic or replica, is used and/or ammunition discharged
The Office of Film + Music determines the need in other filming situations
It’s worth noting that many locations require extra permissions. Pike Place Market, for instance, also the Space Needle and EMP. If you plan to shoot in these locations, be sure to plan ahead.