Washington Workers Compensation Insurance: Quotes from $36/mo

The incident rate of workplace injuries in Washington 3.5 per 100 employees. And so, think about purchasing workers compensation insurance. Here’s a guide on Washington workers compensation insurance. We'll provide you with a detailed overview of this essential aspect of workplace safety and protection. Whether you're a business owner or an employee, understanding the nuances of this policy is crucial. We'll start our journey into WA workers comp insurance by outlining its fundamental aspects.

What is Washington Workers Compensation Insurance?

Washington workers compensation insurance is a vital safety net, legally mandated to shield employees encountering work-related injuries or illnesses. Often referred to as Washington state workmans comp, this program operates under stringent regulations, including provisions delineating exceptions for certain employers in Washington.

This insurance is the cornerstone of safeguarding the financial well-being of workers. It is paramount to grasp the multifaceted responsibilities imposed upon employers to ensure that affected employees receive the support and compensation they need during challenging times of injury or illness arising from their job-related duties.

When Do You Need to Get Workers Compensation Insurance?

To ensure compliance with the law, it's crucial to understand when a business must obtain workers compensation insurance in Washington. This determination is based on a variety of factors, including the nature of the business and the number of employees. We will dissect the legal provisions and guide you through the prerequisites for various businesses.

Understanding Washington workers comp law is paramount to staying within the boundaries of the law. Determining when a business in Washington needs to obtain workers compensation insurance depends on several factors. Here's a list and explanation of key considerations:

  • Number of employees: In Washington, most businesses with one or more employees are required to provide workers compensation insurance. This includes full-time, part-time, and seasonal workers. Ensuring coverage for all employees to comply with the law is crucial.

  • Nature of the business: The industry or business type also plays a significant role. Some high-risk industries, such as construction, healthcare, and manufacturing, may have stricter requirements and higher insurance premiums due to the increased likelihood of workplace injuries.

  • Corporate status: The legal structure of your business matters. Sole proprietors and partners are not considered employees, so they are not typically required to carry WA workers comp for themselves. However, coverage is generally mandatory if the business has employees who are not owners.

  • Independent contractors: Independent contractors are usually responsible for their insurance. However, misclassifying workers as independent contractors when they should be considered employees can lead to legal issues. Ensuring proper classification is essential.

  • State-specific exemptions: Some states may have specific exemptions or rules for certain types of businesses. Checking with Washington state's workers comp authority or regulatory body for precise guidelines is essential.

  • Out-of-state employees: If your business operates in multiple states or has employees working out of state, you may need to comply with the workers compensation laws of those states as well. This can be complex, so consulting with legal counsel or insurance experts is advisable.

  • Voluntary coverage: In some cases, even if your business is not required by law to have workers compensation insurance, you may choose to purchase it voluntarily. This can provide additional protection for your employees and mitigate potential legal risks.

  • Changes in business size: As your business grows and hires more employees, you may reach a threshold where workers compensation insurance becomes mandatory. Be aware of these thresholds and plan for insurance coverage accordingly.

What Government Agency Oversees Workers Compensation Insurance in Washington

Washington State's Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) is the dedicated government agency overseeing Washington state workers compensation rules. This agency is crucial in enforcing regulations and ensuring employers adhere to workplace safety and compensation responsibilities. Let's delve into the agency's functions:

  • Administration of the workers compensation system: L&I administers Washington's entire workers compensation system. This includes processing claims, collecting premiums, and ensuring injured workers receive timely compensation and appropriate medical care.

  • Setting and enforcing standards: The agency establishes safety and health standards for workplaces across the state. These standards aim to reduce workplace injuries and illnesses. L&I also conducts inspections and investigations to ensure compliance with these standards.

  • Claims processing: L&I handles the processing of workers' compensation claims. They assess the validity of claims, determine the benefits injured workers are entitled to, and oversee the payment of those benefits.

  • Safety and health education: The agency plays a proactive role in promoting workplace safety and health. They provide resources, training, and education to employers and employees to help prevent workplace injuries and accidents.

  • Dispute resolution: L&I is involved in resolving disputes related to workers compensation claims. This includes mediating between injured workers and employers and conducting hearings if disputes cannot be resolved through negotiation.

  • Insurance oversight: The agency monitors insurance providers offering workers compensation coverage in Washington to ensure they meet state requirements and provide adequate coverage to injured workers.

  • Risk management: L&I offers services to help employers effectively manage risks in the workplace. This includes safety consultations and programs to reduce the likelihood of workplace accidents.

  • Promoting return-to-work programs: L&I encourages employers to implement return-to-work programs that help injured employees return to work as soon as possible. This benefits both employees and employers.

Washington Workers Compensation Poster

The Washington Workers Compensation Insurance Poster holds a crucial role in workplaces across the state. It is essential to inform employees about their rights and guide them on the proper procedures to follow in the unfortunate event of a workplace injury. Let's delve into the significance of this poster:

  • Employee awareness: The poster prominently displays essential information about workers compensation, ensuring employees know their rights and benefits under the program. It provides clear and concise information that empowers workers with knowledge.

  • Legal requirement: In Washington, it is a legal requirement for employers to display the Workers Compensation Poster in a conspicuous location within the workplace. Compliance with this regulation is essential to avoid potential legal issues.

  • Reporting procedures: The poster outlines the steps employees should take if injured on the job. This includes promptly reporting the injury to their employer and seeking medical attention. It ensures that employees know how to initiate the claims process correctly.

  • Workers’ rights: By prominently displaying the poster, employers demonstrate their commitment to upholding the rights and well-being of their employees. It reinforces the message that employees are entitled to compensation and support in case of workplace injuries.

  • Prevents misunderstandings: Workplace injuries can be stressful, and employees may not be aware of their rights during such situations. The poster acts as a readily accessible reference that can help prevent misunderstandings and ensure employees receive the support they deserve.

  • Encourages compliance: Employers who display the Workers Compensation Poster are likelier to have an informed workforce following the proper procedures. This, in turn, leads to a smoother claims process and a more positive relationship between employers and employees.

  • Promotes safety culture Beyond informing employees about their rights in case of injury, the poster can also serve as a reminder of the importance of workplace safety. It contributes to fostering a culture of safety within the organization.

Which Businesses Are Exempt from Getting Washington Workers Compensation Insurance?

In Washington State, while many businesses are required to obtain Washington state workers compensation insurance, certain exemptions and criteria can exempt certain businesses from this requirement. Here are insights into which businesses may be exempt:

  • Sole proprietors and partners: Sole proprietors and partners are typically not considered employees and are not obligated to carry workers compensation insurance for themselves. However, they can choose to include themselves in coverage if desired.

  • Limited liability companies (LLCs): In some cases, members of LLCs may be exempt from workers compensation requirements. This often depends on their role within the LLC and their specific industry. Members should check with the Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) for clarification.

  • Certain agricultural employers: Agricultural employers with very few employees may be exempt from workers compensation requirements. However, the criteria for exemption can vary, so it's essential to check with L&I or seek legal guidance.

  • Licensed real estate agents: Independent licensed real estate agents who are paid on a commission basis and have a written agreement with a real estate firm may be exempt. They are considered independent contractors rather than employees.

  • Volunteers: In some cases, volunteers may not be required to have workers compensation coverage. However, it's essential to clarify this with L&I and ensure that the nature of the volunteer work meets the exemption criteria.

  • Domestic workers: Domestic workers, such as nannies or housekeepers, may be exempt from workers compensation requirements if they work less than 20 hours per week or earn less than a certain threshold. Again, it's crucial to verify this with L&I.

  • Specific religious organizations: Religious organizations may be exempt from providing workers compensation coverage for their clergy members or ministers, depending on specific conditions and religious beliefs.

  • Some family members: In certain family-owned businesses, family members who are related to the business owner and live in the same household may be exempt from workers compensation coverage requirements.

Compare Cheap Workers Compensation Insurance Quotes Online

Get all the best quotes from leading providers in a click of a button!

How Much Money Does Washington Workers Compensation Insurance Give?

One of the critical aspects of Washington workers compensation insurance is understanding the financial support it offers to employees who have been injured or become ill due to work-related incidents. In this section, we delve into the various types of benefits provided by workers compensation in Washington and break down the financial aspects, including the approximate percentages associated with these benefits. From temporary disability to permanent impairment, we'll explore how these benefits offer vital financial assistance to those in need.

  • Temporary partial disability benefits under washington workers compensation Insurance aim to assist employees who can still work but earn less due to work-related injuries. These benefits typically provide financial support at a rate of approximately 60%-75% of the difference between the employee's pre-injury wages and their reduced earning capacity. The goal is to bridge the income gap and ensure injured workers can continue supporting themselves as they recover.

  • Temporary total disability benefits come into play when an employee cannot work due to a workplace injury. These benefits usually provide compensation at a rate of about 60%-75% of the employee's pre-injury wages. This financial support helps injured employees cover their living expenses while they cannot work and recover from their injuries.

  • Permanent partial disability benefits are available to employees who sustain permanent impairments as a result of a work-related incident. The amount of compensation varies depending on the nature and extent of the impairment. Typically, it is a percentage of the worker's weekly wage, with the specific percentage determined by the severity of the impairment and its impact on the employee's ability to work.

  • Permanent total disability benefits are for employees with severe and permanent disabilities who cannot gain substantial employment. These benefits often provide financial support at a rate of approximately 60%-75% of the worker's pre-injury wages. This assistance provides financial stability for individuals facing long-term or permanent disabilities due to workplace injuries.

Washington Workers Comp Claim Process

We'll delve into the Washington workers compensation claims process. This is outlined below:

  • Reporting the injury: The initial step in the process is for the injured employee to promptly report the injury to their employer. Delays in reporting can lead to delays in the benefits process. Employers should encourage employees to report injuries immediately to initiate the claims process efficiently.

  • Employer’s reporting: Once the injury is reported, the employer is responsible for notifying their Workers Compensation insurance carrier and the Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) about the incident. This notification should occur within a specific timeframe, typically within days of the injury.

  • Claims processing: After receiving the injury report, the Washington workers compensation insurance carrier or L&I will initiate the claims process. They will assess the claim's validity, which may involve investigating and verifying the injury and its work-related nature. This stage can take several weeks, depending on the case's complexity.

  • Medical evaluation: In cases where medical evaluation is necessary, injured employees must attend medical appointments and undergo assessments to determine the extent of their injuries. Depending on medical scheduling and evaluations, this phase may add more time to the process.

  • Claim approval: Injured employees can expect to start receiving benefits once the claim is approved. The waiting period for approval can vary but often ranges from a few weeks to a couple of months, depending on the claim's complexity and the processing speed.

  • Return-to-work programs: In some cases, employees may participate in return-to-work programs to gradually transition back to the workforce. These programs can affect the timeline for receiving full workers compensation benefits, as employees may receive partial benefits while participating.

  • Temporary disability benefits: If the injury results in temporary disability, employees may start receiving temporary disability benefits relatively quickly after the claim approval. These benefits typically begin within a few weeks of the injury date

  • Permanent disability benefits: In cases involving permanent disability, the process may take longer. The extent of the disability, assessments, and negotiations can prolong the time it takes for injured employees to receive permanent disability benefits.

What is the Washington Workers Compensation Fund?

Washington is a monopolistic state when it comes to workers compensation insurance. That said, businesses may only purchase workers compensation coverage from the state. This is where the Washington Workers Compensation Fund comes in place. Washington Workers Compensation Fund acts as the major source covering benefits employees should receive after sustaining a work-related injury or disease.

Penalties for Not Getting Workers Compensation in Washington

Compliance with Washington workers compensation law is not just a legal requirement; it's a crucial responsibility for businesses. Failing to adhere to these regulations can lead to severe penalties and consequences. In this section, we'll explore the potential legal troubles and financial repercussions that businesses could face if they fail to provide this essential insurance:

  • Fines and penalties: The Washington Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) has the authority to impose fines and penalties on businesses that do not comply with workers compensation requirements. These fines can vary depending on the violation's nature and the business's size.

  • Legal liability: Non-compliance can open the door to legal liabilities, including lawsuits filed by injured employees. Without workers compensation coverage, employers may be exposed to costly legal battles and compensation claims from injured workers.

  • Criminal charges: In extreme cases of non-compliance or deliberate attempts to avoid providing workers compensation, criminal charges may be filed against employers. This can result in criminal penalties, including fines and even imprisonment.

  • Loss of business reputation: Non-compliance can damage a business's reputation. It can lead to negative publicity and deter potential customers, clients, and partners from associating with the company.

  • Ineligibility for contracts: Some contracts, especially government contracts, may require businesses to have workers compensation coverage. Non-compliance can make businesses ineligible for lucrative contracts, limiting their growth opportunities.

  • Increased insurance costs: If a business violates Washington state workers compensation laws, it may face higher insurance premiums in the future. Insurance providers may view non-compliant businesses as higher risk, increasing insurance costs.

  • Civil lawsuits: Injured employees who cannot receive workers compensation benefits may resort to civil lawsuits against their employers. This can lead to substantial financial settlements that financially harm businesses.

  • Workplace safety citations: Non-compliant businesses may face workplace safety citations and inspections. These can further disrupt business operations and result in additional fines.

  • Loss of employee trust: Employees may lose trust in their employers if they discover non-compliance with Workers Compensation laws. This can negatively impact workplace morale and productivity.

  • Impact on business operations: Legal and financial repercussions can divert resources and attention from core business operations, affecting overall productivity and profitability.

Rank and Review Insurance Companies

Help others make better decisions

Show more

Washington Workers Compensation Insurance Costs

Workers compensation insurance in Washington is $1.49 per $100 of covered employee payroll. Here are the factors affecting Washington workers comp rates:

  • Nature of the business: The type of business and its industry significantly impact insurance costs. High-risk industries, such as construction or manufacturing, often have higher premiums due to the increased likelihood of workplace injuries.

  • Number of employees: The number of employees a business has directly affects the insurance cost. A larger workforce typically results in higher premiums, with a higher potential for claims.

  • Payroll and wages: Employees' total annual payroll and wages play a role in determining premiums. Insurers may calculate premiums based on payroll figures, so businesses with higher payroll costs may pay more for coverage.

  • Claims history: A business's claims history is a crucial factor. Insurers may charge higher premiums if a company has a history of frequent and severe workplace injuries. Conversely, a clean claims history can lead to lower rates.

  • Safety measures: Employers who invest in robust safety programs and practices can often negotiate lower premiums. Implementing safety measures can reduce the risk of accidents and, in turn, insurance costs.

  • Location: The geographic location of the business can affect premiums. Some areas may have higher insurance costs due to regional risk factors or legal requirements.

  • Experience modification rate (EMR): EMR is a rating factor that reflects a business's claims history and safety measures. A high EMR can increase premiums, while a low EMR may lead to lower costs.

  • Coverage limits: The coverage limits selected by a business can influence costs. Higher coverage limits typically result in higher premiums but provide more excellent protection in case of severe injuries.

  • Deductibles: Choosing a higher deductible can lower premium costs. A deductible is the amount the business is responsible for before the insurance coverage kicks in.

  • State regulations: Each state, including Washington, has workers' compensation regulations and rate-setting mechanisms. Understanding and complying with these regulations is essential for accurate cost assessment.

  • Choice of insurance provider: Different insurance providers may offer varying rates and discounts. Obtaining quotes from multiple insurers to compare costs and coverage options is advisable.

Washington doesn’t allow employer’s to work with private insurers. Nonetheless, here’s a table showing the rates of companies we recommend to businesses in other states:

CompanyCost per MonthCost per YearBest for
NEXT$26$312Best overall; Fastest workers compensation insurance.
The Hartford$30$360Workers compensation insurance with a preferred medical provider network.
CoverWallet$28$336Comparing workers compensation insurance quotes online.
Tivly$32$384Comparing workers compensation insurance quotes over the phone.
Thimble$34$408On-demand workers compensation insurance.
Hiscox$38$456Specialized industries.

Compare Cheap Workers Compensation Insurance Quotes Online

Get all the best quotes from leading providers in a click of a button!

Best Workers Compensation Insurance Companies

As said earlier, Washington only allows businesses to purchase workers comp insurance from a state fund. Employers can’t approach private insurers. But still, if you’re curious about which carriers offer the best coverage, here’s a review of the companies we recommend.



  • Competitive rates.

  • Comprehensive coverage.

  • Efficient claims processing.

  • Bundle workers compensation insurance with other policies and enjoy a 5% discount.

  • Best overall.

  • Grants an online certificate of insurance.

  • Great value for money.

  • Fastest workers compensation insurance.


  • Couldn’t find any.

NEXT specializes in serving the needs of small business owners, providing straightforward and customizable insurance solutions. They are known for their user-friendly online platform, making it easy for businesses to quickly get the coverage they need. Your workers compensation insurance from this company comes with a free certificate of insurance. NEXT also allows you to manage the policy online.

Best for: Best overall; Fastest workers compensation insurance.

Average cost: $26 per month

Our rating: 10/10

The Hartford


  • Extensive experience.

  • Strong financial backing.

  • Excellent customer service.


  • Not available in some cities.

The Hartford is a well-established insurance provider with a focus on commercial insurance. They offer a range of coverage options tailored to businesses' specific needs. This company’s workers compensation insurance comes with a preferred medical network. You can get quotes online or through an agent.

Best for: Workers compensation insurance with a preferred medical provider network.

Average cost: $30 per month

Our rating: 8/10



  • Innovative technology.

  • Flexible coverage options.

  • A partner of many reputable insurance companies.


  • Limited industry coverage.

Tivly focuses on providing affordable and straightforward insurance solutions for businesses. They aim to simplify the insurance process and offer competitive rates to help businesses manage costs. Tivly offers a personalized approach to granting coverage. You will call and talk with a representative to compare quotes over the phone.

Best for: Comparing workers compensation insurance quotes over the phone.

Average cost: $32 per month

Our rating: 9/10



  • On-demand coverage.

  • No long-term commitments.

  • Affordable options.


  • You can’t reach customer service by calling.

Thimble specializes in on-demand insurance, allowing businesses to purchase coverage for specific periods or projects. Their user-friendly app makes it easy for businesses to view policy limits and make changes as needed.

Best for: On-demand workers compensation insurance.

Average cost: $34 per month

Our rating: 9/10



  • Specialized industry coverage.

  • Strong financial stability.

  • Customizable policies.


  • Customers do not receive full consulting insurance.

Hiscox is an international insurer focusing on providing specialized coverage for businesses. They offer customizable insurance solutions and have expertise in various industries. This company’s workers compensation coverage comes with upgrades. Consider working with Hiscox as it observes a very proactive claims process.

Best for: Specialized industries.

Average cost: $38 per month

Our rating: 9/10

Recent Reviews

Recent Posts