This page covers the laws, rules and policies that apply to registered apprenticeship. This page also includes a section on proposed changes to the Washington Administrative Code (“Rulemaking”) and additional resources you can use when considering an apprenticeship program.
Laws (RCWs) and Rules (WACs)
Washington State Code Reviser Versions - The Washington Administrative Code (WAC) and Revised Code of Washington (RCW) are maintained and updated by the State Office of the Code Reviser. If you receive an error message when referencing a link to a specific section of a WAC or RCW, try your search at the Washington State Legislature.
- All Apprenticeship Rulemaking Documents.
- Apprenticeship Rules: Chapter 296-05 WAC.
- Apprenticeship Act: Chapter 49.04 RCW.
- Industrial Insurance: RCW 51.12.130: Registered apprentices or trainees.
Apprentice labor hour requirements on public works projects
RCW 39.04.320: Apprenticeship training programs — Public works contracts — Adjustment of specific projects — Report and collection of agency data — Apprenticeship utilization advisory committee created.
Proposed Rules for New Industry Platforms
There are significant changes coming to the state’s registered apprenticeship system. These changes create new platforms (committees) of industries, and will require new rules about apprenticeship program applications.
The state Legislature approved and Gov. Jay Inslee signed into law E2SSB 5600 in March 2022. The goal is to increase industry support of registered apprenticeship. The law also requires the Washington State Apprenticeship and Training Council (WSATC) to consider living wage, presence of a career ladder, or other non-wage benefits for graduating apprentices when deciding whether to approve a new program. Sustainability of new programs will also have to be considered.
As a result, L&I is proposing a change to the Washington Administrative Code (WAC). The new rule would create a new section in WAC 296-05, “Economic and Industry Sector-based Platforms.” It would amend WACs 296-05-003, and -011.
To ensure transparency in the rule development, a WSATC subcommittee has been holding monthly public meetings to discuss what the rule should include.
The RCW/WAC subcommittee has finished its draft rules, which will be submitted to the WSATC for consideration at the next regularly scheduled meeting on October 20, 2022.
The law permits creation of several industry platforms (committees), and they will review applications and provide recommendations to the WSATC. The platforms may include:
- The building trades.
- Manufacturing and engineering.
- Health care and behavioral health.
- Education and early learning.
- Information and communications technology.
- Biotechnology and life sciences.
There are some 200 registered apprenticeship programs in the state covering over 400 different occupations. This law would expand registered apprenticeships into areas beyond the traditional building and industrial trades. The law, and proposed rulemaking, would allow ways for other industries to more actively participate in apprenticeship.
Employers are facing a shortage of thousands of skilled workers over the near term. Working with registered apprenticeship programs provides a variety of benefits to employers. This includes developing a workforce with on-the-job experience in the employer’s business processes.
Stakeholder meeting agendas & summaries
Here’s what happens next:
- March 2023 – Anticipated draft rule filing with the Code Reviser’s Office (CR-102).
- April 2023 – Proposed public hearing.
- May 2023 – Proposed rule adoption.
- June 2023 – Rule would take effect.
Federal Regulations Governing Apprenticeship
- Labor Standards for the Registration of Apprenticeship Programs.
- Department of Labor Employment Law Guide: Laws, Regulations, and Technical Assistance.
- 29 CFR Part 29: Labor Standards for the Registration of Apprenticeship Programs.
- 29 CFR Part 30: Equal Employment Opportunity in Apprenticeship and Training.
- The Fitzgerald Act: The National Apprenticeship Act.
If you have problems getting to these CFRs, go to U.S. Department of Labor Laws and Regulations.
Administrative policies (State) - Washington State Apprenticeship and Training Council (WSATC)
- WSATC Admin Policy 2022-02: Lifting COVID-19 Restrictions Related to Related Supplemental Instruction (RSI)
- WSATC Admin Policy 2019-01: Transfer Policy.
- WSATC Admin Policy 2017-01: Temporary Variance to Certify Electrical Trainees.
- WSATC Admin Policy 2016-01: First Full Training Cycle Definition.
- WSATC Admin Policy 2015-01: Compliance Policy.
- WSATC Admin Policy 2014-02: Granting Credit in Licensed Occupations.
- Requesting Certificates of Meritorious Service from the Washington State Apprenticeship and Training Council (WSATC) (Jan 2014).
- WSATC Admin Policy 2012-03: Apprenticeship Preparation Program Recognition.
- WSATC Admin Policy 2012-01: Special circumstances allowing for the registration of apprentices when an apprenticeship program is under Washington State Apprenticeship and Training Council registration limitation.
- WSATC Admin Policy 2011-03: Clarification on the definition of "Service Work" in regards to supervision as contained in apprenticeship standards.
- WSATC Admin Policy 2011-02: Safety Consultation Services for Related Supplemental Instruction (RSI) Facilities.
- WSATC Admin Policy 2004-01: Final Orders.
- WSATC Admin Policy 2003-01: Process for Objections to Apprenticeship Program Standards.
Electrical minimum guideline standards
Registered youth apprenticeship standards
- Apprentice Utilization Requirements (AURs) require a certain percentage of labor hours for a given construction project be performed by Washington State registered and/or approved apprentices.
Contact us if you need these documents in other formats or paper copies.