Effective July 1, 2023, a new law significantly shifts Washington’s approach to journey level (01) electrician certification. It moves from five pathways to certification to one – an apprenticeship-only model.

Find out more about the law and how it impacts electrical contractors.

For registered apprenticeship programs, here are some things to keep in mind:

  • L&I’s Electrical Program, through the licensing section review, approves hours of experience for electrical trainees through a review of affidavits filed with the agency.
  • Registered apprenticeship programs can grant advanced standing based on hours of experience approved by L&I’s Electrical Program licensing section.
  • For specialty electrician certificate holders in 02, 03, 04, 06, 06A, and 07 specialties, your program is required to grant 4,000 hours for previous experience. This is based on L&I review of state law (RCW 19.28.191(1) (c) (Effective July 1, 2023).
    • Residential (02) – WAC 296-46B-920 (2)(a).
    • Pump and irrigation (03) – WAC 296-46B-920 (2)(b).
    • Signs (04) – WAC 296-46B-920 (2)(d).
    • Limited energy system (06) – WAC 296-46B-920 (2)(e).
    • HVAC/refrigeration system (06A) – WAC 296-46B-920 (2)(f)(v).
    • Nonresidential maintenance (07) – WAC 296-46B-920 (2)(g).
  • Regarding hours of work for non-certificate holders in the above mentioned specialties, your program retains its authority to evaluate and award credit towards advance standing of the applicant. The total can include all hours, from the specialty list above, approved through L&I’s Electrical Program licensing section.
  • L&I’s Apprenticeship Program reviews registered training programs for evidence of a “fair and equitable process” in granting credit for hours of work.
  • Use this document to find additional guidance for registered apprenticeship programs regarding changes in Electrical Apprenticeship.

Questions regarding the impacts of this new law can be sent to: