Contractor License Bonds in Washington

The Washington contractor license bond is a form of protection for consumers and vendors from contractor actions that cause financial damage. It is a legal requirement that contractors carry the license bond in order to have an active license, which is set by the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries.

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There are three types of contractor classes that are required to carry bonds in Washington: general, specialty, and electrical contractors. The specialty contractor class is comprised of 63 specialty classifications.

What Does a Washington Contractor Bond Cost?

Contractor bond limits in Washington vary depending on license type. A $6,000 bond is needed for general contractors, a $12,000 bond for specialty contractors, and a $4,000 bond for electrical contractors. Regardless of the license classification, the price will range from 1-10% of the bond limit. The rate for the bond is dependent on several factors including personal credit, years in business, and even character. Refer to the chart below for example pricing.

*Preferred Price
Bond Limit Monthly | Annual
Bond Limit: $12,000 General Contractor License Bond Monthly | Annual$11 | $120
Bond Limit: $6,000 Specialty Contractor License Bond Monthly | Annual$10 | $100
Bond Limit: $4,000 Electrical/Telecommunications Contractor License Bond Monthly | Annual$10 | $100
*Bond pricing must be approved by an underwriter. Rates do not constitute an offer and are subject to change.

General Contractors in Washington

The general contractor class in Washington can perform all new and remodel construction jobs and is allowed to hire subcontractors. Certain types of work, such as plumbing or electrical, can be done by a general contractor, but require additional certification with the State of Washington. The bond limit or total amount that can be paid from the bond is $12,000.

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Specialty Contractors in Washington

There are 63 different contractor classifications that need to carry a $6,000 contractor license bond in Washington. These classes include HVAC, painting, flooring, plumbing, and many others. Unlike general contractors, specialty contractors are limited to their trade and cannot hire a subcontractor.

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Electrical Contractors in Washington

Electrical and telecommunications contractors must have a surety bond in the amount of $4,000. Becoming a licensed electrician demands more rigorous testing and experience requirements compared to the other classifications.

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What Other Insurance Coverages Are Required for Washington Contractors?

Washington contractors with certain classifications are required to carry liability insurance. General and specialty contractors must have $50,000 property damage and $200,000 public liability, or a combined single limit of $250,000. Telecommunications contractors need to show coverage in the minimum amount of $170,000. Electrical contractors do not have a requirement for general liability insurance, but it is recommended that all contractors hold a policy as many jobs require it prior to starting work.

Workers’ compensation insurance is mandatory for contractors if they have full-time employees. This is coverage for employees in the event they become sick or are injured due to work.