WA State Licensing: Add employees
Business people looking at computer monitor

Add employees

Hiring employees for the first time or reopening an employer account

If you are not already an employer and want to hire employees for your business for the first time, you must:

  • File a new Business License Application.
  • and
  • Pay the appropriate fees.

How to file a Business License Application

There are two ways to file the Business License Application:

Online - The fastest way to file!

Online applications are typically processed within two business days. It may take up to 21 days if you file by mail.

  1. Complete a Business License Application online using an E-check or a MasterCard, Visa, or American Express credit or debit card (gift cards cannot be used).
    • You must have Internet Explorer 6.0 and above or Firefox. Safari and Google Chrome are not supported at this time.
    • Mobile devices (tablets, smart phones, etc.) are not recommended.

For certain activities, you should file a paper application.

Paper

  1. Complete the Business License Application and any supplemental forms that apply to your business. To find out which supplemental forms you’ll need, see the Business Licensing Guide.
  2. Mail your completed application, supplemental forms, and a check or money order for applicable fees to the address on the form.

Note: The Department of Labor and Industries and Employment Security Department will expect quarterly reports following the date you put on the Business License Application as the first hire date. Reports are required quarterly for all active accounts, even if you have no employees and "0" hours to report. Failure to submit your quarterly reports will result in the assessment of penalties and interest.

Hiring additional employees

If you are already an employer and plan to hire more employees at the same location, you do NOT need to file a new Business License Application. Please contact Department of Labor and Industries, Employment Security Department and Department of Social and Health Services for more information.

Each time you hire an employee, you must report the hiring to the Department of Social and Health Services.