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Travel Reimbursement

If you must travel further than 15 miles to see a health-care provider, you can get reimbursed for some of your travel expenses.

To be reimbursed, your trip must fulfill all these requirements:

  • The provider must be further than 15 miles one-way from your home (30 miles round-trip).
  • There aren't any providers closer to you that could treat your condition.
  • You get the travel reimbursement pre-authorized by your claim manager.

These requirements are only for travel reimbursement. You can still see any health-care provider listed in our online directory, but your travel expenses won't be covered if you don't meet these requirements.

You can't get reimbursed for travel if:

  • There is an adequate provider within 15 miles of your home, but you just prefer to go to a provider further away.
  • You see a provider, but you didn't get pre-authorization from your claim manager for the travel reimbursement.
  • You are just visiting a pharmacy to fill or pick up prescriptions.

What you can get reimbursed for:

  • The mileage you have to go to reach the provider, minus the first and last 15 miles (30 miles round trip).
  • Parking, tolls, and some other expenses. See the form for details.

Questions workers have

How do I apply for reimbursement?
How to apply for reimbursement
If your claim is managed by... You must...
L&I
a self-insured employer Request reimbursement directly from your employer or their claims representative.
How much is the travel reimbursement?

The current rate is $0.56 per mile.

Check the state reimbursement rates for other expenses: Reimbursement Rates for Lodging, Meals, and Privately Owned Vehicle Mileage (25 KB PDF) (www.ofm.wa.gov).
How do I find out the distance to a provider?

Search for providers near you at www.FindaDoc.Lni.wa.gov. Depending on how far from your home you search, the search results will show estimated distance a little differently:

How to apply for reimbursement
If you search for providers... Then we'll show you an estimate of...
within 15 miles the distance to each provider as you would drive.
further than 15 miles away the distance to each provider “as the crow flies”.
Independent medical exam (IME) - can I get travel costs reimbursed?

If your claim manager requests that you go to an IME, and the IME is further than 15 miles from your home, you will be reimbursed travel costs, including the first and last 15 miles of a round trip.

If you now live out-of-state, you may have to return to Washington State for an IME. If needed, L&I or your self-insured employer will pay for your transportation, lodging, meals, and wage replacement for lost wages to attend the exam.

Vocational services and retraining - can I get travel costs reimbursed?

Yes, mileage for meetings requested by your vocational rehabilitation counselor (VRC) may be reimbursed, if the meeting is further than 15 miles from your home. In addition, some travel costs that are approved in your vocational plan may be reimbursed.

Orthotic/prosthetic repairs after claim closure - can I get travel costs reimbursed?

Yes, reasonable travel expenses may be reimbursed if you need to get your orthotic/prosthetic appliance repaired after your claim is closed. Hearing aids are not included. The appliance must be originally purchased by L&I or your self-insured employer.

What if I live or move out of state?

You may have to travel a greater distance to receive care for your claim. If so, payment for some travel costs may be considered if the travel is pre-approved by your claim manager. You won't be paid if your claim manager doesn't pre approve your travel.

If you're thinking of moving out of Washington, learn what you can do to communicate with L&I and find new care.

 

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