The vocational provider arranges interpretation services for a worker if they determine the worker needs communication assistance. L&I pays for interpreter services—and no prior authorization is required.
What are the vocational provider’s responsibilities when a worker’s English is limited?
- Determine whether the worker needs an interpreter.
- Arrange for an interpreter, if needed.
- Example: If a meeting is at a physical therapist's office and the worker needs an interpreter, you should let the office know. Each provider is responsible for arranging services.
- For paid interpreters, you or your staff arrange interpreters through L&I's interpreter scheduling system, interpretingWorks.
- Note in your progress reports that you used an interpreter at the appointment.
Note: Payment is made only for interpreters arranged through the scheduling system.
How do I learn how to arrange for a spoken language interpreter?
Visit L&I’s main Interpreter Services web page to learn about how to:
- Register to use the scheduling system.
- Arrange for a spoken language interpreter through the scheduling system.
How does interpretation differ from translation?
- Interpretation services convey oral communications. L&I or the self-insured employer pays for oral interpretation services during a vocational referral for interpreters arranged through the scheduling system.
- Translation deals with written communications. Document translation services require prior authorization and must be requested by the insurer.
What about telephone interpretation?
- For all L&I-insured claims, you can use an over-the-phone interpreter when speaking with workers. Benefits include:
- Real-time access to over 300 languages.
- No appointment needed.
- Quick access: In most cases, a telephonic interpreter can be on the phone within 30-60 seconds.
- You can use over-the-phone interpreters for both in-state and out-of-state workers.
- In-person contact is still preferred for vocational services. However, sometimes it makes more sense to use over-the-phone interpretation: for unusual languages or in remote areas, or when rescheduling a meeting or sharing time-sensitive information.
How can you access telephone interpretation services?
On claims covered by L&I, you can request over-the-phone interpretation services by calling:
CTS Language Link
- Dial 1-844-303-7212
- Tell CTS Language Link you need help with an L&I claim and give them:
- Vocational provider name
- Vocational firm name
- Claim number
- Worker’s name
- Language needed