What's New for Vocational Counselors

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New vocational firms and State Fund referrals

Sept. 18, 2019

We continue to implement vocational services that are consistent with RCW 51.32.095 and support injured workers and employers through work disability prevention principles. We are analyzing data and reviewing our policies, processes, and practices to ensure they are aligned with the law and these principles.

To effectively develop, test and evaluate changes, we will not be accepting applications for new vocational firms to receive State Fund referrals. This is effective immediately and will be re-evaluated in six months.

This policy is temporary and will allow us to analyze and appropriately adjust improvements based on a stable firm population. The policy does not apply to new vocational firms that perform services for self-insured employers or other organizations.


Additional information about accessing interpreter services

Aug. 6, 2019

We recently announced that there may be a shortage of interpreters who are also L&I providers, due to certification issues. The attached updated flyer contains resources to consider when you are not able to access an interpreter.


VocLink Connect issue

July 8, 2019

Customers who use VocLink Connect are being prompted to upgrade to a paid version of Java to use the service. L&I is looking into this issue and will update this page as we learn more.


Maximum vocational training fund adjustment

June 10, 2019

The maximum vocational training fund is increasing. This change is the result of an annual adjustment required under the statue governing vocational rehabilitation services.

The training fund amount is directly linked to the plan approval date.

If the plan is or was approved:

  • July 1, 2019, through June 30, 2020, the amount is $18,660.46.
  • July 1, 2018, through June 30, 2019, the amount is $18,294.57.

The amount of the maximum training fund applies regardless of whether a worker chooses Option 1 or Option 2 after plan approval.


How to request ADMX for all referral types

January 2, 2019

Beginning January 1, 2019, a VRC can submit a request for ADMX via EVOC for the following referral types:

  • Vocational Recovery (EI)
  • Ability to Work Assessment (AWA)
  • Plan Development (PD)
  • Plan Implementation (PI)

Once the EVOC is granted, VRCs don't need to submit EVOC updates on the ADMX. However, it is critical that L&I and the vocational community strengthen their efforts to identify and resolve barriers as soon as they appear. Therefore, as soon as a VRC identifies barriers, they should promptly submit an EVOC so they can collaborate with their VSS on how to overcome them. 

Note: Because the original fee caps for vocational referrals have increased, make sure you have exhausted the funding in the original fee cap before requesting ADMX.


Help identify and address psychosocial barriers

December 18, 2018

The first document below summarizes the actions we encourage vocational rehabilitation counselors (VRCs) to take to address psychosocial barriers they observe with workers.

The second document contains internal claims training content (originally shared at the L&I fall voc conference). This describes in-depth guidance given to claim managers who are talking to workers, providers, and employers. It also describes psychosocial interventions in detail and gives answers to some frequently asked questions. 

Questions? Please write to VocRecoveryProject@Lni.wa.gov

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