Before applying for the following benefits, you must first complete the steps on the Preferred Worker Program page. Once you receive L&I approval of the preferred worker’s job, review the following tabs to learn how to take advantage of each of the program’s benefits.
When you file quarterly reports, the preferred worker’s hours should be reported under risk class 7204, Preferred Workers. This risk class has a low rate because it doesn’t include charges for Accident Fund or Medical Aid Fund. Estimate your company's quarterly premium savings with the Preferred Worker Calculator.
Self-insured employers may deduct the amount of the claim cost reimbursement for a preferred worker's claim on your next self-insured quarterly report. Supplemental pension and asbestos assessments must be paid. For more information, contact the Self-Insurance Program.
If a preferred worker has a new workplace injury during the certification period, fill out the Employer’s Report of Accident and indicate risk class 7204, Preferred Workers. Please also email the Preferred Worker Program PrefWorkerProg@Lni.wa.gov. A new claim during the certification period will not impact your company’s experience factor and future rates.
Self-insured employers can ask L&I to reimburse the claim costs when the claim is ready for closure. For more information, contact the Self-Insurance Program.
Apply for Preferred Worker wage reimbursement online using your My L&I account. Login and go to My Dashboard, then click on “Request preferred worker reimbursement.” Or you can use this form: Preferred Worker Wage Reimbursement Application for Employers.
The Preferred Worker Program reimburses 50% of the Preferred Worker’s wages for 66 working days (max $10,000). Select the dates you want to request for reimbursement:
- The dates do not need to be consecutive.
- Dates must be during the preferred worker certification period, and within one year of the date we receive the application.
- Working days only – you cannot be reimbursed for vacation pay, sick pay, holidays, etc.
- A partial work day counts as one of the 66 days.
Enter the date, number of hours, and total daily wage for each day. Base wages may include overtime (if not restricted) but do not include tips, bonuses, commissions, etc.
Payroll records and daily timecards are required for verification.
If we receive a valid reimbursement request from more than one employer for the same worker certification period, the requests will be paid in the order received, up to the stated limits.
Apply for Preferred Worker expense reimbursement online using your My L&I account. Login and go to My Dashboard, then click on the link “Request preferred worker reimbursement.” Or you can use this form: Preferred Worker Expense Reimbursements for Tools and Clothing – Application for Employers.
The Preferred Worker Program may reimburse up to:
- $2,500 for tools and equipment
- $400 for clothing
Note: Training materials/fees are not reimbursable under the Preferred Worker Program.
In order for an expense to be eligible for reimbursement it must be:
- Required to make it possible for the preferred worker to perform the approved job. We cannot reimburse for equipment, tools, or clothing you regularly provide for your employees.
- Purchased after the job offer and within 60 days of the first date of the preferred worker’s employment. We cannot reimburse for items purchased prior to offering the job to the worker.
Examples of equipment and tools:
- Specialty tools
- Keyboard tray
- Sit-stand desk
- Wheeled 5-gallon bucket
Examples of clothing:
- Steel-toe boots
- Office or outdoor clothing
Request reimbursement within one year of the date of purchase, and provide a copy of the itemized receipts.
If we receive a valid reimbursement request from more than one employer within the same worker certification period, the requests will be paid in the order received, up to the stated limits.
After the first 12 months, if the preferred worker maintained approximately the same number of hours per week without a reduction in wages, you may be eligible to receive a one-time payment of 10% of their wages for the first year (max $10,000).
The 12 months begins the date the worker is certified as a preferred worker or the first date of employment, whichever is later. Submit the application within one year of the date the 12 months ended.
The Continuous Employment Incentive (CEI) application is not currently available for online submission. Use this form to apply: Preferred Worker Continuous Employment Incentive Application for Employers.
Fill in the preferred worker’s total wages for each month for the first 12 months. Wages for CEI may include bonuses and commissions. Mail or fax the completed form, payroll records, and timecards to:
- Insurance Services Administration
P.O. Box 44291
Olympia, WA 98504-4291
- Fax: 360-902-6100
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