Washington: WA Cares Amended and Premium Deadline Extended
All Employers with WA Employees
January 27, 2022
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HB 1732 and HB 1733 delay and amend the Washington Cares Act (WA Cares) as of January 27, 2022. WA Cares was set to go into effect January 1, 2022; however, because the legislature was working on amendments, Governor Inslee issued a statement indicating that penalties would not be assessed before April 2022. These two new bills make some significant changes employers should be aware of.
- Employers must start collecting, remitting, and reporting employee premiums as of July 1, 2023.
- Employers must refund WA Cares premiums collected to date within 120 days of when the premiums were collected.
- As of July 1, 2023, broader employee populations may take advantage of new opt-out criteria. However, the deadline for original employee populations to opt out under the original criteria was not extended.
- The timeline for when qualified employees are eligible for benefits was also extended to July 1, 2026.
The delay, and the refund mandate, are effective immediately. Employers should take immediate steps to correct payroll processes and return employee funds.
- Remove WA Cares premium deductions from payroll process.
- Refund previously deducted WA Cares premiums to employees by the applicable deadline.
- Train appropriate personnel on the new requirements.
- Subscribers can call our HR On-Call Hotline at (888) 378-2456 for further assistance.
Disclaimer: This document is designed to provide general information and guidance concerning employment-related issues. It is presented with the understanding that ManagEase is not engaged in rendering any legal opinions. If a legal opinion is needed, please contact the services of your own legal adviser.
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