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Jul13

Business Guidelines in Washington State

A message from the Washington State Department of Licensing:


On June 29, Gov. Jay Inslee announced changes to the requirements businesses must follow as part of Washington state’s economic reopening. The statement applies generally to businesses and professions licensed by the Department of Licensing (DOL). The biggest change is that businesses and professions licensed by DOL will no longer need to follow the industry-specific guidance documents developed by the Governor’s Office.

New guidance prepared by the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries applies to private businesses, including when employees need to wear masks, training on how to recognize workplace hazards, and verifying employee vaccine status, among other provisions. The new guidelines went into effect at 12:01 a.m., June 30.

Examples of the new guidance include:

  • Vaccine verification/negative testing: Recommended but not required for large indoor and outdoor events
  • Capacity limitations: No restrictions in restaurants, bars, stores, businesses, theaters etc. (except large indoor events)
  • Physical distancing: No requirements
  • Facial coverings: Not required for vaccinated individuals, unless required by individual businesses
  • Travelers: Follow CDC recommendations

It is important to note that Gov. Inslee has not yet rescinded many of the proclamations that allow the state to provide continued relief to businesses and professions due to COVID-19. At this time, driver training schools may continue to offer web-based classes and continue to waive the required one hour of in-car observation time for driving students.

As a state agency, DOL has a separate set of guidelines for reopening. Currently, 40 of our 45 full-time driver licensing offices have reopened, most by appointment only. The Poulsbo office will reopen on July 20, and we expect to have the rest open by the fall. For now, the requirement is for our on-site employees who directly serve customers and our customers to wear masks.

In addition, we have expanded our online services. Customers can remotely renew their driver's license/ID and vehicle registration, change their address, and dozens of other transactions online at dol.wa.gov.

We will continue to provide you with updated information as guidelines change.