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Washington proposes workers comp rate increase

rate increase

The Washington State Department of Labor & Industries is proposing a 4.9% increase in the average hourly rate employers and workers will pay for workers compensation insurance next year.

In a statement, L&I Director Joel Sacks attributed the increase to “economic uncertainty and lingering impacts of the pandemic” and “finding a balance between charging enough to cover costs and keeping rates steady and predictable.” 

L&I also said the increase is necessary because of “higher-than-normal” increases in the state’s average wage in recent years, according to the statement.

The proposed increase is below what L&I expects to pay for 2024 claims, so the agency will augment the premiums with funds from the workers compensation contingency reserve.

A series of public hearings has been scheduled for this fall and a final decision is expected by Nov. 30.