Business & Workers

Essential businesses

Businesses that can operate using telework should continue to do so. For businesses where individuals cannot work from home, the Governor’s Office has provided guidance on what businesses are essential, building on the federal government’s and California’s definition of "essential critical infrastructure workers."

  • To clarify status, or request inclusion on the list, please fill out this form.
  • If you want to report suspected violations of the governor’s orders regarding essential business functions, evictions, and social distancing, please fill out this form.

Supporting affected employers and workers

State agencies have been working with federal agencies, employers and workers to support businesses and workers affected by COVID-19.

CARES Act and Stimulus package


  • The state Employment Security Department (ESD) has resources for filing for unemployment benefits that provide temporary income when you lose your job through no fault of your own.

Paid Leave

  • Information from the U.S. Department of Labor regarding paid Leave under the federal Families First Coronavirus Response Act.
  • The Employment Security Department has information for workers and employers impacted by COVID-19.
  • The Washington state Paid Family and Medical Leave insurance program is funded by employers and employees. This program will allow workers to take up to 12 weeks, as needed, when they welcome a new child into their family, are struck by a serious illness or injury, need to take care of an ill or ailing relative and for certain military-connected events.


  • The state Department of Revenue has information on relief for taxpayers, including extensions for filing and paying tax returns.
  • The IRS posted filing and payment deadline Q&As to address the federal filing and payment extension to July 15 and the additional extension to Oct. 15, first quarter estimated tax payments, IRAs and HSAs.
  • IRS information on employee retention tax credit to encourage for eligible employers to keep employees on their payroll.
  • IRS frequently asked questions page on small business tax credits that reimburse them, dollar-for-dollar, for the cost of providing paid sick and family leave wages to their employees for leave related to COVID-19.

Worker safety

The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recommendations to help employers keep their workers safe with sick leave policies, cleaning routines and more.

Other business and worker resources

Insurance information for businesses

The Office of the Insurance Commissioner has information about insurance coverage businesses need to protect themselves from potential losses.

Small businesses and non-profits

The City of Bellevue has put together a great small business and non-profit resource page. Many of these resources apply to businesses statewide. 

The Department of Commerce has resources for agencies that provide assistance to unsheltered people

SCORE is a nonprofit association dedicated to educating entrepreneurs and helping small businesses start, grow, and succeed nationwide. SCORE is a resource partner with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), and has been mentoring small business owners for more than forty years. SCORE offers small business entrepreneurs confidential business counseling services at no charge. SCORE provides resources, templates and tools to assist entrepreneurs in developing tools and plans they need to navigate their way to small business success.

The Small Business Administration (SBA) will provide disaster assistance loans for small businesses impacted by COVID-19.

The Washington Small Business Development Center COVID-19 related information and resources.

Guidance for state agencies and local governments

Washington State Emergency Management Division has activated the Public Assistance (PA) Program to initiate the recovery process for the COVID–19 Pandemic Outbreak. This is specifically for state and local governments, tribal governments and to certain non-profits seeking federal assistance in response to COVID-19. Please visit Questions can be submitted to: 

Information from the Office of Financial Management helping state organizations prepare for and respond to issues and questions related to COVID-19.

Department of Enterprise Services manages many business and operational services that state agencies and municipal governments need to deliver public services. Their centralized services include facilities and lease management, accounting, human resources, risk management, contracting and printing. 


Planning, preparing and responding to COVID-19