Seeking medical attention and telling your employer immediately after a workplace injury are very important. Employers need to be familiar with the situation when the L&I paperwork arrives so that they can help you plan your return to work.

What to expect from your employer

Employers in the State of Washington need to:

  • Make sure injured workers receive prompt medical attention.
  • Complete the employer section of the accident report form. 
  • Look for return-to-work opportunities with light-duty work, if medically approved.
  • Your employer has the right to access your claim file.
  • Employers may not required an injured worker to seek medical attention from a particular doctor or attend medical appointments.

Employers should be aware of the Stay at Work program. They may be eligible for reimbursements for some of the base wages and expenses such as training and tools related to the light-duty work.

What if the worker is unable to return to the job of injury?

If the worker has physical restrictions, the attending medial provider will explain them on the Activity Prescription Form (F242‑385‑000). If the worker is unable to perform the job of injury while recovering, the employer may be able to find you transitional or light-duty work within the medical restrictions outlined in the APF.

What if the injury was not the ‘fault’ of the employer?

Washington is a no-fault state, so L&I will cover an allowable claim for a workplace injury regardless of who is at fault. This rule also applies to self‑insured employers.

What if the employer threatens the worker?

Employers may not discriminate or retaliate against an injured worker for

  • Filing a claim.
  • Saying that claim will be filed.
  • Seeking workers’ compensation benefits.

If an employer has discouraged a worker from filing a claim, you may file a Workers’ Compensation Claims Suppression Complaint Form (F262‑024‑000).

What if the employer complains that the claim will ‘cost too much’?

Workers’ compensation covers injuries that happen on the job. In most cases, employers are required to provide this coverage. The employer and employee contribute to the benefits.

Althauser Rayan Abbarno can help!

The injury attorneys with Althauser Rayan Abbarno are available to help protect your rights and secure your benefits. For a FREE consultation call (360) 736-1301 or visit