• Advocacy

Washington State Considers Changes to Independent Contractor Reporting, Your Feedback is Needed!

The Division of Child Support is considering proposing changes to introduce independent-contractor reporting to Washington state, and they are asking for your feedback on their proposal (also known as agency request legislation). This is a draft concept that still has several steps before it will be approved to be introduced as legislation for the 2025 Washington state legislative session.

What is the proposal?

DCS’s proposal would require those doing business in Washington state who retain the services of or provide a platform for independent contractors to report that arrangement to DCS. The proposed effective date for the legislation is Jan. 1, 2027.

The new-hire reporting process in RCW 26.23.040 requires employers to report all newly hired and rehired employees to DCS within 20 days of hire. This allows DCS to send income-withholding orders quickly, for more efficient collection of child support funds that are then disbursed to the child’s household. Roughly 70% of payments collected each month are based on income-withholding orders being honored by employers.

The requirement would be similar to current new-hire reporting requirements and is based on a model act published in late 2023. Twenty-one other states have mandatory reporting requirements for independent contractors. 

Why is DCS proposing this change?

Unless reported by the parent paying support or the parent receiving support, DCS learns of contractor arrangements from the Washington State Employment Security Department's quarterly earnings reports, if at all. This delays DCS in sending income-withholding orders, which means less money for the child’s household.

The delay also makes it more difficult to establish a “right-sized” order because we have less accurate information about the paying parent’s actual income. As the gig economy grows, traditional employment arrangements are decreasing proportionately. They seek to address this gap with our proposed change.

Please provide your feedback by Wednesday, July 24, by emailing

DCS will also host two webinars to provide more information about the proposed changes.

  • July 15: This webinar is intended for independent contractors, impacted individuals, or advocacy groups. Click here to learn more or register to attend on July 15.
  • July 18: This webinar is for businesses and parties that would be responsible for reporting independent contractor informationClick here to learn more or register to attend on July 18.

We appreciate you taking the time to share your feedback about DCS’s proposal. Your information, comments and position will be shared with the Office of Financial Management and the Governor’s Office later this fall when they consider whether to approve our agency request legislation concept. If it is approved, legislators will be asked to sponsor the proposal and introduce it during the 2025 session.

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