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Navigating The L&I Claims Process

In Washington, employers are required to obtain no-fault workers’ compensation coverage for their employees. If you were hurt on the job or you developed an occupational disease, workers’ comp insurance offers medical coverage, time loss compensation, and disability benefits.

As L&I claims are complicated, it is easy to get overwhelmed—especially after suffering a serious work injury. At The Walthew Law Firm, our Washington workers’ compensation attorneys want to make sure that you have all of the information that you need to navigate the L&I claims process.

Your Five-Step Guide to the L&I Claims Process

1. Seek Medical Attention

Injured workers need immediate medical attention. If you were hurt on the job or if you developed an occupational illness, you need to see a qualified medical provider as soon as possible.  Your claim process will go more smoothly with the support of a qualified doctor.  You deserve reliable, high-quality medical care from a trusted doctor.

Your L&I claim will not be allowed unless you seek medical care. It is a required part of the claims process. At your initial appointment, inform your medical provider that you suffered a work-related injury or developed a condition related to your work. You and your doctor will complete certain necessary claim forms that you need to file your claim.

2. Notify Your Supervisor/Employer

As emphasized by the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries (L&I), injured workers have a legal responsibility to notify their employer of an injury or occupational disease. You may inform your first-level boss, another supervisor, or a representative of your company’s HR department. Your employer likewise has a duty to report your injury to L&I.   With full information, your company or organization, particularly large, self-insured employers, can help you with the L&I paperwork. It is illegal for your employer to discourage you from reporting your accident.

3. File a Workers’ Compensation Claim

You need to make sure that your workers’ comp claim is filed properly.  With the exception of a written report to a self-insured employer, reporting your work injury to your employer is not the same thing as filing an L&I claim. While your employer should help facilitate your claim, not all companies or organizations know how to do so.

File your worker’s compensation injury or occupational disease claim as soon as possible. Your workers’ comp claim cannot be processed by a claims manager until your doctor has submitted the relevant paperwork to L&I or your self-insured employer.

4. Await Approval of Your Workers’ Comp Benefits

Once your L&I claim is approved, you will get access to workers’ comp benefits to cover all claim-related, proper and necessary medical expenses. Of course, an L&I claim can cover more than just medical care. If your medical provider certifies your inability to work because of your injury or medical condition, you should receive time loss compensation. You may also be entitled to other benefits, including job-retraining services, permanent partial disability benefits, and pension benefits, depending on medical provider support. If L&I or a self-insured employer deny any of these benefits, you should consult with an attorney. Serious injury claims benefit from professional legal guidance and support.

5. Take Immediate Action to Protest or Appeal an Adverse Decision

Getting benefits paid in an L&I claim can be challenging. Even workers who are qualified for benefits sometimes run into problems in the claims process. If your L&I claim was rejected or if you received any other type of unfavorable decision, you must take immediate action to protect your rights. Call an experienced Seattle L&I claims attorney for help.

As confirmed by Washington’s Board of Industrial Insurance Appeals, you have 60 days to file a protest or an appeal after receiving a decision from Labor & Industries or your self-insured employer. Do not wait to get started with the appeals process. Our workers’ compensation attorneys will review your case, explain your options, gather all necessary supplemental evidence, and take action to get you the full and fair L&I benefits that you deserve.

Schedule Your Free L&I Claims Consultation Today

At The Walthew Law Firm, our Seattle workers’ comp attorneys are strong, results-focused advocates for clients. If you have questions about the L&I claims process, we are more than ready to help. To set up a no-cost, no-obligation initial appointment with an experienced workers’ comp attorney, please contact us today. From our offices in Seattle and Everett, we handle L&I claims all over Western Washington, including in Bellevue, Federal Way, Burien, Tacoma, Renton, Kirkland, Puyallup, Kent, Vashon Island, Bremerton, Lynnwood, and Olympia.

Our clients are saying:

“I just wanted to reiterate how excited we are for how everything worked out in this fight for a lifetime pension. We are very grateful for all the hard work you and Patrick have put in working on this case for such a long time and being able to prevail! That you very much again!”


“Words cannot express how grateful we are for your help in our L&I case. I am confident we could not have secured better representation.”


“I want to let you know that I truly appreciate all the efforts you put into ensuring that I received what is due to me. I really thank you for your thoughtfulness, care and kind words.”


“There are no words to express my gratitude for all the help you have given me during this part of my journey over the many years. The Walthew Law Firm lawyers and office people are the very best.”


Call us today.
Offices in Seattle and Everett.

Talk to an attorney to get free advice about your claim.


Mailing Address
PO Box 34645
Seattle, WA 98124-1645
*Packages and overnight deliveries should be shipped to the Seattle physical address.

Seattle Office
3000 1st Avenue
Seattle, WA 98121

Everett Office
2906 Colby Ave | Suite 101
Everett, WA 98201

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