Washington Contractor License Bond?

In the state of Washington, applicants must acquire a Contractor License Bond as part of the contractor license application process. This bond ensures that contractors fulfill their construction work responsibilities, adhere to state laws, and provides compensation to the public for financial harm if the contractor doesn't comply with licensing regulations.

Sample Payment and Performance Bond Form
General Contractor License Bond

Bond Amount: $12,000

Required by: Washington State Department of Labor & Industries

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Explore our table down below and find your contractor license bond with ease. From specialty contractors to general contractors and various electrical and fire protection contractors, we have a range of options available. 

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What Contractors are Required to be Licensed in Washington?

If you're working in the state of Washington and doing any of the following types of work or submitting bids, you must be a registered contractor:

  • Alter
  • Repair
  • Construct
  • Consult or superintend
  • Improve, move, wreck, or demolish
  • Develop residential property for sale 
  • Add or subtract from real property
  • Install cabinets, move trees, or renovate houses

Contractors are required to enroll with the Department of Labor and Industry (L&I) and obtain proper bonding and insurance coverage. There are two different classifications in the state of Washington, general and specialty contractors.

General Contractors

General contractors in Washington have the flexibility to do various type types of construction work and can also hire subcontractors with expertise in different specialties. However, contractors involved in the following specialties must fulfill additional education, examination, licensing requirements: 

Specialty Contractors

Specialty Contractors in Washington can only work in the specific specialty they are registered for and cannot hire subcontractors for their projects. L&I oversees 63 different specialties like roofing, painting, HVAC, tree removal, mobile home set-up, and many others.

Who Regulates Licensing for Contractors in Washington?

In Washington, the Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) is the regulatory body for general and specialty contractors. 

Email: ContReg@Lni.wa.gov 
Toll-free: 1-800-647-0982
Phone: 360-902-5226 (Option 2)

Mailing address:

Washington State Department of Labor & Industries
Contractor Registration
PO Box 44450
Olympia WA 98504-4450

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How to Get a Contractor License in Washington

To register with the Department of Labor & Industry as a contractor, you must: 

  • Register your business with the Department of Revenue.
  • Obtain a contractor license bond or an assignment of savings.
  • Acquire a general liability insurance policy.
  • Fill out the Application for Contractor Registration.
  • Pay the required application fee of $124.70.

For the fastest and simplest registration process, this three-step process is recommended:

1) Decide on you business name and business structure

  • If you plan to establish a sole proprietorship or partnership, first, determine your business name. If you have registered your business and obtained a Uniform Business Identifier (UBI), move on to step 2.
  • However, if you intend to start an incorporated business, like an LLC or Corporation, it is recommended to get in touch with the Secretary of State or consult a private attorney to incorporate your business properly.

If you need more clarification about the appropriate business structure, refer to the guide Applying for Your Washington Business License: A Step-by-Step Guide or visit business.wa.gov for comprehensive information on initiating and structuring your business.

2) Purchase your surety bond and insurance

You will need to purchase:

A Washington Continuous Contractor Surety Bond, which should be:

  • $12,000 for general contractors, or
  • $6,000 for specialty contractors.

A general liability insurance policy with the following coverage:

  • $200,000 in public liability, and
  • $50,000 in property damage, or
  • $250,000 combined single limit.

Ensure that your bond and insurance carry your precise business name, and list L&I (Labor & Industries) as a certificate holder for your liability insurance. If you need assistance with purchasing your surety bond and insurance, don't hesitate to reach out to us for help. We’re a licensed insurance broker in Washington that provides liability insurance and surety bonds.

3) Visit your local L&I office

The next step is to visit your local L&I office, where customer service representatives will assist you in registering your business and completing the application process. To prevent any avoidable delays, please ensure you have the following items ready:

  • Your chosen business name and business structure, or the business registration details and UBI number obtained from the Department of Revenue.
  • An original and completed Application for Contractor Registration (F625-001-000) with notarized signatures. If needed, our staff can assist in completing the application and notarizing signatures for present applicants.
  • A continuous contractor surety bond or assignment of savings.
  • A certificate of general liability insurance.
  • Registration fee

If you prefer alternative registration methods, you can mail your Application for Contractor Registration to the address below. The following documents must be included:

  • A continuous contractor surety bond or assignment of savings.
  • Certificate of general liability insurance.
  • A check or money order to the Department of Labor & Industries.

The application should be mail to:

Contractor Registration
P.O. BOX 44450
Olympia, WA 98504-4450

Note: Every signature on your application must be both original and notarized.

Where can I check if my business information is up to date?

The L&I Verify a Contractor, Tradesperson, or Business tool can be used to verify the status of a contractor’s assignment of account, contractor license bond, or general liability insurance. More specifically, the tool enables you to:

  • Search for subcontractors and tradespeople.
  • Confirm if a contractor holds an active license.
  • Verify the certification status of a tradesperson.
  • Check if a contractor maintains an active workers' compensation account.
  • Review safety citations or other infractions associated with the contractor.
  • Determine if there are any lawsuits against their bond.
  • Submit a tracking request for a subcontractor with an active workers' compensation account.
  • Print the Certificate of Workers' Compensation Coverage.

Must I Use my Washington Contractor Registration Number on All my Business Communications?

Once you've registered, it's essential to include your contractor registration number on all your business communications.

According to the law, whenever you advertise, ask for bids, or offer to work, you must include your contractor registration number. This includes:

  • Business cards
  • Yellow Page ads
  • Newspaper ads
  • Internet ads
  • Estimates and bid proposals

Are There Any Other Options Instead of a Bond in Washington?

Instead of a bond, you can use an assigned bank account as an alternative. This involves filling out an Assignment of Account form, which is also available at L&I local offices. You can deposit the required amount in the form of cash, a certificate of deposit, time deposit, or a money market account at a bank, savings and loan association, or credit union that has a branch in Washington.

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